Husband does not want intimacy at all!


So, we have been married for almost 11 months now. I still consider us newlyweds, but my husband does not seem to want sex anymore. Well, he says he does, but then he does/says things that tell me that he doesn't. But, first, let me give you a little bit of background. We have had problems in our first year of marriage. And, I admit that I can be pretty horrible to him at times, but he also doesn't want to admit that he's not perfect either. He believes that all the problems that we have are rooted in me alone. And, in the last couple months, things for me have gotten worse. I'm pretty sure that I am clinically depressed (and scheduled to see a psychiatrist in two days). I also have gained a little weight since we got married, but I'm not overweight (5'7" and 150 lbs).

We practice NFP and have a LadyComp which tells us which days are non-fertile and which days we should abstain. Since my temps are not steady at all during the month, we get very few "green days." I always tell him when the green days start and that they won't go red again until after my period ends. During the week, we are rarely home together due to either work or other commitments and barely see each other. He refuses to have sex with me unless I have freshly shaved legs b/c it's a turn-off for him. I think it's silly, but the compromise that I made with him is that he needs to have a shaved face b/c unshaven is a turn-off for me.

Let's start with last month, we finally got a green day, and I was willing to stay awake until after he gets home from the fire department (FD) (he doesn't get home until about 10:00 and I have to get up at 5:00 for work), so that we can. But, he tells me that he'd rather go out with his FD buddies for a drink!

Then, this month, we get green days again starting on Tuesday. He has class on Tuesday, so we decide to wait another day until Wednesday. I wake up early in the morning to shave my legs and put something cute on so that when I get home from work, we can enjoy being together. But, he doesn't shave that morning because he forgot or he's in the routine of only shaving for FD days b/c it's a requirement and that it irritates his skin too much if he shaves 2 days in a row. Again, this happened on Friday and Sunday. Saturday we had a huge fight and he didn't talk to me during all day, but had made up Sunday morning. But, the thing is that if he has 2 FD days in a row, he'll shave both days or if we go see him mom on a day in between, he'll shave.

Oh, and by the way he acts, you'd think that he's allergic to cuddling or holding hands or touching of any kind. Any time we kiss, I always initiate it and he takes it no further than a peck on the lips.

I question him in what I think is a "non-threatening" manner, but then he gets mad and tells me that he can do nothing more to show me that he loves me and still wants me. I just don't understand. The least situation in my mind is that he forgets. And, he's told me that I should remind him. Why can't he make it a point of remembering? The worst situation is that he is not attracted to me and is lying when he tells me he is.

By the way, I am almost positive (can never be 100% b/c I am not with him 24/7) that he's not having an affair. And, I've checked the history on the computer, so I know there's no porn.

This is the way that things have been since the day we got married. I keep trying to talk to him about it, but he is tired of talking, but nothing changes. I'm at my wits end, and I don't know what to do anymore. Please, any advice on how to proceed will be appreciated.

Thanks! And, sorry for such a long post, but I needed to rant. Today is a green day that he's supposed to be home, but has decided to take an extra shift at the FD.


Really sorry to hear about your situation. I just had a few questions to clarify:

  1. how old are you both?
  2. how long were you dating prior to marriage (including engagement)?
  3. did you have sex before marriage?


Whoa! Your marriage sound like it's in deep, deep trouble. You sound basically incompatible.


[quote="Middleman, post:3, topic:197953"]
Whoa! Your marriage sound like it's in deep, deep trouble. You sound basically incompatible.


You're so encouraging!

I think marriages can hit rough spots, but you must pray to Jesus to do the right thing. Pray for holiness first, then other stuff second. I wish you all the best.


Phil -

Answers to your questions:

1) I am 29 & he is 31.
2) We dated/were engaged for 2 years before marriage.
3) We succumbed to temptation a couple times before marriage (nobody's perfect), but were usually pretty good at stopping ourselves before it got to that point.

And, before you ask, he's never been an overly affectionate person, ever. But, I have told him time and again that I crave it, but I always have to ask and then get grunts when I cuddle up next to him or hold his hand.


I think you’re both acting selfish. He wants you to shave your legs? Well, then do it, it’s not that hard! But to then require something of him seems like you’re both pushing at each other and are requiring things of each other instead of acting out of love for one another.

I think your focus on “green days” perhaps is making it seem like a chore to him. I obviously don’t know you, but to focus so much on we have to have sex now, or never, is not necessarily a mood maker. Why not have a little spontaneity? I mean, the use of NFP is supposed to help you space children, not as a Catholic contraceptive.

As far as cuddling and holding hands go, well did he do that when you were dating? edited: I see now you say he’s never really been that way. Well, in general you can’t expect to change people to a great extent. But perhaps if you went about it in a way that showed that that type of thing gets you in the mood he’d be more receptive to it?

Have you both sat down and talked? No blaming or arguing, just talked to try and get through it?


Wow! For starters, you guys both sound little anal about the shaving issue…what is that about??? You are only 11 mths into your marriage and are not having sex because one or both of you have a little hair somewhere??? Get over that now, because the longer you are married the less likely you are to put that much emphasis on such a minor thing. I mean whats going to happen to your sex life once you put kids into that mix? After cleaning up baby puke, changing diapers and getting up countless times during the night, neither of you are going to want the other to shave and get all pretty just so you can sneak away for a few moments of love making. I think the best thing for you to do is first sit down and pray together, second, call up a marriage counselor and seek help. My DH and I have been in therapy a few times and it helps up re-learn how to communicate to each other. Every marriage goes thru its rough patches, but since his behavior has been going on since you got married, I would definitely figure it out before it becomes an even bigger problem.


It is so easy to erase the ‘history’, OR, now many programs like “Internet Explorer” has what’s called 'In Private" viewing where there is no history recorded or shown. My prayers are with you., and, pray to St Joseph (patron Saint of husbands).



My prayers for you. Sometimes, (I’m a guy, by the way) when men hear, “natural family planning” it may sound like, “I don’t care if we get preganant.” Have you spoken with him about that? Does he know that NFP is fairly effective if used correctly?

As to the cuddling/hand holding thing-Was he like this alot when you two dated? I don’t mean sexual, I mean cuddly?

And, we have no right to jump to accusation of infidelity unless there is solid proof. It’s such a serious charge!


I agree with Mamanurse. And if he won’t go to therapy with you, you can go just to get advice for how to get through this.

I would also recommend your read The Rules. It has good advice for how to get a guy chasing you, and there is even a version for married women.


Just for the record, I agree with both the last posters on the shaving thing. I think it is unfair for us to put that “requirement” onto our sex lives. But, he WILL NOT have sex with me unless I shave my legs. And, if you are going to say that I should focus on loving him no matter what he asks of me and give selfishly in return, I say I’m sick of it. Why does the woman have to take care of herself to look good for her husband, but the mad does not have to do the same for his wife?


innocent until proven guilty and there’s no credible reason to believe this man is viewing pornographic materials.


How long have you all known each other?


It sounds like one of you needs to be the bigger person…I love it when my Dh shaves his face and I know he likes it when my legs are silky smooth, but maybe setting an example of self giving and doing it just because it would make him happy is a better answer. The prickly facial hair can be a problem, but is it worth all of the fuss? really??


For the record, I don't even like to look at a gal's legs if they're not shaved! Gross!

Can't fault a brother for that one! ;)


Rascalking -

Thanks for your response. We entered NFP as a mutual decision. Both for religious and medical reasons. I was on the pill before marriage due to medical reasons, and we decided NFP was best for us and it’s not like we’d never get to have sex. It was going to have to be limited. And, we waited this long (with a couple of falls from grace), so what’s the big deal if we have to wait for a week or two, but then can have sex for a week or two straight.


I’d suggest looking at the “love languages” books. They’re being peddled from a protestant now but I believe St. Thomas actually put some work into developing the idea that there are 5 love languages.

The whole shaving thing on both your parts seems ridiculously immature. I know a nun who wears a habit who has to shave her legs (atleast from high-shin down) to look nice and clean in order to wear panty-hose as her habit doesn’t go to the floor. What is the big deal???


How was your premarital counseling? It sounds like some of your issues have always been around--did you guys talk about it before you got married (for instance, the cuddling)?


Real men have beards. :smiley: j/k. I think the whole shaved parts thing is the tip of a much larger problem that hasnt presented itself yet.


I take it your not a fan of women with underarm hair to the floor either? :smiley:

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