How to 'get over' no sex in your marriage

I’ve posted on here before about this issue, but as time goes on (we’ve now been married eight years) the problem gets worse. I have been abstinent through no choice of my own for most of this year. I’m 31. My husband is due to see a doctor very soon but I’ve been reassured by the doctor that it is ‘unlikely’ to be a physical problem as he’s young (just turned 30, but has been like this since I’ve known him at 17).

I am trying to come to terms with the very likely possibility that my husband will not have a medical problem (Which is a good thing I do know!!) that is causing his low libido but a psychological one. I have tried to talk to him, he assures me he feels fine, but if I’m honest I think he feels upset that I want sex because it reminds him that he doesn’t meet my needs. I don’t know what else to say to him, but it’s true! He doesn’t. A counsellor has said to me that if he won’t open up there is little she can do. (He doesn’t want to see a counsellor.)

Has anybody here been in a similar situation and has successfully managed to use strategies to cope in this kind of marriage? I do not want to leave my husband - he is a good father and I cannot ever, ever contribute to creating a broken home. I want to cope with it and I also want to be happy but am really really struggling right now. I feel so lonely and unwanted as a woman. I feel as sexual as a tablecloth. (First inanimate object I could think of…)

Thank you in advance.

It could be a physical problem. There are conditions that can cause what your husband is experiencing, in a young man. One of them is hereditary hemochromatosis. It is treatable. I am very familiar with this condition, and most of the symptoms are reversible if caught at an early age. Feel free to PM me for more info.

There are of course other physical conditions that can cause these problems, so a good workup by the doctor is an excellent idea. Don’t throw in the towel yet, and in the meantime prayers!

The problem with we males is that when we encounter this sort of problem it strikes at the core of our manhood and we bury our heads in the sand or turn cold towards our wives for fear of failure and rejection. It’s a very difficult subject for most males to broach in a conversation, even with a doctor.

Praying for you. I know the pain and how it feels like rejection even when it isn’t meant that way. My husband has decided on abstinence despite not having a low libido for various reasons. I know he loves me but it feels as if he dislikes me. He is happily married. He is 100% faithful. He’s attentive of every other need I have. He’s a very devoted and loving spouse and the best father I’ve ever known (and saying that compared to my Daddy is saying a lot!), but still I feel as if he doesn’t want me at times. It hurts in ways that can’t truly be described, and I feel bad even complaining when so many wives have real issues with horrible marriages. I feel guilty for desiring more from him. I feel nasty because normally the woman is the one rejecting the man. Feel free to PM me if you’d like. This has happened before in our marriage and it hurts that it’s happening again. At least this time I understand a little better. I’m hoping for your sake it’s medical and there’s treatment. In our case it’s not.

Is the issue that he has no inclination to be intimate, or is unable to become suitably aroused? (Noting that the latter may lead to the former.)

Rejection - for whatever reason - is terribly difficult to deal with. You don’t “get over” it. However, I’ve survived. It’s easier now that I’m older - it was very difficult when I was younger. Now that the hormones aren’t driving me, we can be friends - sort of. But I’m not sure I’ve really forgiven him for past rejection, since he still doesn’t love me. He still says things that hurt. But I’m no longer passive about his disrespect - which actually makes him treat me better. :wink:

At least your husband is a good father - mine was & still is a workaholic. I usually felt like a single mother.

Sometimes I wonder if I should tell him that I often plan his funeral. When I was depressed I would plan my own. I’m not depressed anymore, but life would be pretty good without him - but I am used to having someone to talk with. Tho I do fine talking to my animals. :smiley:

I was never this open about our problems when I was younger. I had such lousy self-esteem I couldn’t bear to admit to anyone - even a counselor - that I’d made a mistake in getting married. I do wish I had been capable of leaving him years ago, tho I don’t know if my life would have improved. The kids would have been in day care while I worked & I did like being home with them.

You say he doesn’t want to see a counselor, but perhaps you should. It would give you a neutral person to vent to & explore ideas for coping.

I wrote a long, overly honest, tmi post - had 2nd thoughts & deleted it. So the short version - since your husband doesn’t want to see a counselor, see one for yourself. You need a neutral person to vent to and help with finding ways to cope.

Believe me - that’s a lot better than either suffering in silence or trying to explain things to a husband who doesn’t want to hear you.

Make sure they do a “FULL” thyroid screening.
The thyroid controls almost every aspect of the metabolic processes in the human body. Hypo/Hyper-thyroid can lead to depression and lost libido ( it is well documented - you can find 1000s of articles on the internet (from PhD’s in the field as well as legitimate website
i.e. WebMD.com “Thyroid May Cause Sexual Problems” (read more) )

Thyroid problems can “suddenly appear” between 25 and 35 and usually the hallmarks are there during the onset of puberty!

The doctors will only want to perform a “TSH” thyroid test - IT IS CHEAP and appears to give a “yes/no” answer; however, THIS IS NOT ENOUGH!!!

TSH can read normal while the Free-T3/T4 are well out of balance (this happened to my wife, the TSH would be fine at a 1 to 2; however, the T3/T4 neither would be at a “normal” level or would not be in balance)
Doctors Explain Why the Most Common Thyroid Test Misdiagnoses Some Patients (read here)

I am a Chemist and it’s taken my wife and I over a decade to finally educate our doctor on why the TSH wasn’t enough and why the simple T4 replacement therapy wasn’t working. Finally we were referred to an endocrinologist that specialized in thyroid treatment and finally found the right treatment and it still took several years to “get it right.”

This is a very easily missed and often dismissed medical condition and the ONLY reason I even know about thyroid issues having any possible effect on libido, as well as mental health, is because of the research I’ve done to help my wife - they do not teach this in the standard pre/med-school courses. This information is usually only taught to those that specialize in endocrinology, and even then, the TSH level is still all too often taught as a the “Gold Standard” despite the fact that the American Association for Clinical Chemistry has been warning the doctors and laboratories there can be issues with TSH only testing (well all thyroid testing have some issues; however, I wont go into the the details in thread, you can read some about it here aacc.org/publications/cln/articles/2016/october/whent4-is-not-enough-the-case-for-liothyronine-testing-and-therapy)

Yikes. For six years you have struggled with this issue.

From your past posts there is a high probability you husband is back into porn,/ or an inappropriate relationship with other females.

You seem to go back and forth from, " he has no sex drive" to " he has a porn problem"

I’m. Sorry to point this out, but your husbands sex drive is porn driven.

I havn’t been in a similar situation as you but i would take what his doctor said about the unlikelihood of it being physical with a grain of salt.
The Medical profession is very far from knowing all the physical causes of low libido as it is an understudied area.
While,in some people the cause can be Psychological or due to Depression,in many many other cases doctors wrongly dismiss it as being Psychological due to the person being of a young age.
Its likely that the doctor wil just test his Testosterone levels but there are other hormones too such as androstenedione,DHEA & DHEA-S,androstenediol (plus more) that should be tested too.
Also Thyroid conditions like others have mentioned.
In some cases,its possible that it may not be a Endocrine issue but a problem with receiving signals through the Nervous System.
Doctors know of certain Neurological illnesses such as M.S or spinal cord disorders as being able to cause low/no libido but there are also other Neurological things that they havn’t yet discovered.

I dont knwow how effective they are or arnt but there are also natural supplements ávailable for this.

The former. Although maybe the two are linked. He can become aroused physically with no problem.

How shocking is that? I’m so sorry it took so long. :frowning: I will mention this to my husband. He won’t, unfortunately, let me go with him to see the doctor.

I haven’t seen any for a very long time but it is possible.

Thank you Elena. Which supplements do you know of?

That’s not ideal in the circumstances.

Then make an appointment to see his doctor too - tell dear hubby that you will be doing so as there are already enough issues without adding secrets!

The endocrinologist quizzed me about my wife’s symptoms almost as much as she quizzed my wife. I’m blessed with a good wife and could talk freely in front of her about her behavior, physical illness(es?), how she tolerated (or not) hot and cold etc… Endocrine disorders can be very difficult to diagnose and, as Elena pointed out, can be the result of multiple endocrine systems being out of balance. Without the third-party assessment, differential diagnosis can be prolonged if not impossible when treating potential endocrine disorders.

Be careful with supplements in the USA - BE ABSOLUTLY sure you discuss this with both the doctor and a pharmacist! Some supplements are good, some are questionable, and some will out-right kill you. There is really no FDA regulation over their production, quality, and unless we see deaths - their efficacy or effects in the population. They can also interact with other medication that can result in all sorts of unexpected consequences which is why one ABSOLUTLY MUST discuss their usage with the medical professional(s) that are treating any condition - even a minor ear ache!

Finally, and maybe already suggested in your other threads, it sounds as if a good Catholic marriage councilor may be needed to help open the paths of communication. A good marriage is something that must be worked at… for some reason… it just doesn’t “happen” as in the romance or fairy tale stories. :shrug:

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.