Nonexistent sex drive


#1

I’m having a little trouble with my wife, any ideals would be great.

My wife and I did not have sex on our wedding night, she was tired I can understand that. Then when we went on our honeymoon, she forgot a pill (she is taking them for medical reasons) on our travel day and wound up getting her period on the honeymoon, she did not want our first time to be during her period I can understand that. Then a month later, we started to fool around and after about 5min of foreplay, she gets up and says she forgot something for school (she is a grad. student). Well that was the last time we had any physical romance, note I said any. Yup you guessed it we are married and are both VIRGINS!! To make it worse we have been married for ~16mo! I am frustrated too. I ask about it atleast once a month, and she says, “I just don’t think about it” or “I’m just too busy with school” I feel like I got the short end of the stick. We had more of a sex life (even though we did not have sex) before we got married, than we do now. We would sit together, hold hands, french kiss, kuddle, ect. Now we hold hands once in a great while, and it is like pulling teeth to even get a peck out of her. I don’t know what to do. I love her and can’t use the “put out or get out” method. And I feel like if she where to “give in” and have sex after one of our talks it would just be to shut me up and I don’t know if it would be something I could do if I did not feel like it was something she wanted. I am frustrated. I’m thinking some form of counseling, but what kind? Marriage, sex, couples,ect? I also don’t know if there is something she may have been taught, she was raised catholic and I Baptist. Is there anything that you can think of that from a catholic point of view could be causing her to not want to consamate our marriage?


#2

Here are a few quick thoughts (I wish I had more time to go into detail, but hopefully someone else will!)

  1. The Pill causes decreased sex drive in many women.

  2. The Pill also causes very early abortions as one of the ways it “prevents” pregnancy. Since she was raised Catholic, she may be aware that using contraception in the marital act is sinful, too.

Why is she taking the Pill? There are usually good alternatives for medical reasons.

Do you know about Natural Family Planning? It is even more effective than the Pill, and all natural (and not against Catholic teachings). It is **not ** the old “calendar rhythm” method!

Sorry this is so disjointed :o But I think the answers to some of these questions may help in finding a solution. You are definitely getting the short end of the stick in your sexless marriage!


#3

The pill maybe one reason, it does decrease the sex drive, but you said she was willing to cuddle and kiss before marriage. Now you say not even that, because she may be afraid, now married, it will lead to sex. I really feel she needs to talk to a professional. There might be a physical problem (reason she on the pill in the first place??) or I hope not, but possiblily, a trauma of some sort as a young girl? or even using the pill she might be afraid to sin because she’s using it? There are other alternitives to the pill, a good Doctor can help her. She needs help and your understanding. I will pray for both of you. God Bless You, Kay


#4

This is an unfortunate situation. Communication is the absolute key. This lack of intimacy should be approached and dealt with. It is her marital obligation and priviledge to participate in relations with you. I do not think your vows included celibacy . . .

She definitely needs help with this and offer up as many prayers for her as you can along with trying to discuss it frequently and openly. Now, I do not mean hound her or pressure her. But, do find out the root of the problem and what you need to do to calm her fears/worries/concerns. If necessary counseling, or a marriage encounter retreat may work, or go with her to Her Priest. Be willing to meet her on her “turf” so to speak with a mediator she can trust.

As a practicing Catholic she should be accepting of the idea that your marriage at least needs to be consumated to avoid the open door for anullment grounds. Is she not ready to be open to life yet? Was there sexual abuse in her past that makes her scared? I do not know, but definitely do not give up on her and do not give up on your love!!


#5

Ok here are some answers to your questions.

She is taking the pill because she would get so sick during her period she could not go to school/work or anything.

We talked to a priest about marital relations while on the pill, b4 we got married and he said that if she was on it due to medical reasons that it was just like taking any other medication and the sterilazation was just a side effect, and sex would be ok.

As far as I know she was never sexualy abused.

Also as far as the pill decreasing sex drive. She has not been on it for 4mo now because we moved acrossed the country and no longer have insurance that will pay for it, and we cant afford it, and we are still having the problem.

That move also makes a problem of meeting with her priest. We are new here, so she dose not have “her priest” any more.
I hope these helped. I also poasted this to the ask an apol. page and have not heared any thing, for over 5 days so I poasted it here because that is what it said to do.


#6

It seems to me that she has some sort of fear- perhaps getting pregnant, perhaps related to past abuse or even consentual encounters, perhaps of sex itself.

She definitely needs to open up to someone- either you or a priest or a counselor- to figure out why she has this reaction when physical affection was agreeable prior to marriage when sex was not a licit possibility.

Has she been able to cope at school and work without cycle regulation on the pill? Have you discussed children now that pregnancy is a stronger possibility? Is there a chance she was secretly or subconsciously counting on the contraceptive effects of the pill to put her mind at ease since she is still in school, and is now nervous about conceiving?

Bless you for sticking with her “for worse.”


#7

16 months? You qualify for sainthood. If she is smart enough for grad school… she is smart enough to know that this is soooooo not the way a marrage is supposed to work. I say sit her down & say enough is enough… she needs to lay it all out… tell you what she is afraid of… why she won’t have sex with you. and if she doesn’t know or isn’t willing to talk about it, you both should seek the advice of a Christian counselor. I don’t see how your marrage can survive otherwise…


#8

Answers
"perhaps related to past abuse or even consentual encounters"
It would not have been a past consentual encounter because we are both stil virgins.

Has she been able to cope at school and work without cycle regulation on the pill?
-When she was in HS she started it. I assume she was able to in the past but I don’t know for sure.

Have you discussed children now that pregnancy is a stronger possibility?

We have talked about it all along and have always said that we are not going to try to have kids yet but are very open to the ideal if it where to happen.

Is there a chance she was secretly or subconsciously counting on the contraceptive effects of the pill to put her mind at ease since she is still in school, and is now nervous about conceiving?

That is always a possibility, I don’t know what she dose not share with me. But if that is the case why worry about it when she was still on it?

Thank you all for your imput. It is helping, just talking about it in an anonumos format.


#9

John,

God Bless you for bringing your questions to a Catholic Forum where you might better understand things from your wife’s perspective. You appear to be trying to be a very understanding husband and this is a good thing!

May I suggest you look into a weekend retreat called Marriage Encounter which assists couples in building a better relationship, or perhaps even Retrouvaille, a similar program for marriages facing serious difficulties. Both programs were started by Catholics and continue to have a strong Catholic influence, although non-Catholics are frequent participants. In Sacramento, the Retrouvaille leaders are not even Catholic, so it is quite open to all faiths.

I recommend these programs or perhaps a Catholic counselor because it is quite against Catholic teaching for a wife married in the Catholic Church (I’m assuming the two of you were married in the church) to refuse her husband in the way your wife has refused to consummate your marriage.

If you were not married in the Catholic Church, is it possible that your wife is feeling guilty for having gone against the teachings of the Church which require that someone baptized Catholic be married in the Church unless they have a dispensation from the Bishop? If this is what’s going on, your situation can be easily remedied to bring your marriage into alignment with the requirements of the Church by having it blessed in the Church. There is some simple paperwork that needs to be completed and then the priest submits paperwork to the parish where she was baptised, letting them know she is now married.

I wish you well in your struggle and appreciate the patience you have shown through-out.

God Bless,

CARose


#10

[quote=johnsm]Answers
"perhaps related to past abuse or even consentual encounters"
It would not have been a past consentual encounter because we are both stil virgins.
[/quote]

It is possible to be a “technical” virgin, yet have a past that involves illicit activities such as mutual masturbation or so-called incomplete acts of lust. You seem confident in your wife’s past, though; I’m not trying to make you doubt it. Just trying to point out other possibilities in case there are skeletons in the closet that she never felt were relevant since she IS a virgin, after all.

Has she been able to cope at school and work without cycle regulation on the pill?
-When she was in HS she started it. I assume she was able to in the past but I don’t know for sure.

I don’t understand. Didn’t you mention she is now off the pill because of insurance? How is she doing NOW?

Have you discussed children now that pregnancy is a stronger possibility?

We have talked about it all along and have always said that we are not going to try to have kids yet but are very open to the ideal if it where to happen.

Is there a chance she was secretly or subconsciously counting on the contraceptive effects of the pill to put her mind at ease since she is still in school, and is now nervous about conceiving?

That is always a possibility, I don’t know what she dose not share with me. But if that is the case why worry about it when she was still on it?

Right, that’s my point. There was no reason for her to express these feelings to you if there was no chance of pregnancy. Perhaps she was struggling with the morality of having sex on the pill despite medical use BECAUSE she knew she was a little glad for the contraceptive side effect. Then after she got off, she has the new worry of becoming pregnant.

You two sound like great candidates for NFP because of your willingness to consult a priest on the morality of relations while on the pill, and your courage to bring this up on a Catholic forum despite not being raised Catholic yourself. The periods of abstinence should be a piece of cake after 16 months of continence!

This lack of libido, though, no matter what its cause, is not normal, and she needs to have it addressed either through counseling if it is psychological or through medical intervention if it is hormonal or otherwise physical.


#11

:frowning: Hi, I posted a similar thread just a bit ago, and I’m slowley loosing my sex drive, this whole conterceptive thing is driving me :mad: bonkers!!! I need :praying: :thumbsup: Well good luck to you, God be with you, Piper


#12

Sorry I meant to say praying, LOL :wink: :rolleyes: :slight_smile:


#13

She very well may be afraid of “the pain ?” of losing her virginity, it is painful for some more than others :confused:


#14

[quote=kamz]She very well may be afraid of “the pain ?” of losing her virginity, it is painful for some more than others :confused:
[/quote]

Good point…this is also what I was thinking. She sounds afraid of something & it could very well be she’s nervous about “the first time”. Pray, pray, pray


#15

Here are some more answers.

"She very well may be afraid of "the pain ?"
That could be it, I never thought of it, because she is so tough. Once when she was a kid she had a broken arm for 3 days before telling her arm it hurt. But I never thought about what she may think about going into something that she knows might hurt. Thanks!!

"It is possible to be a “technical” virgin"
I don’t think that was it, because I was her first boyfriend, that I know of at least.

"If you were not married in the Catholic Church, is it possible that your wife is feeling guilty for having gone against the teachings of the Church

We where married in the Catholic Church

Thank you all you have realy helped me, keep the comments comming. I also think you for all the prayer offerd up.

God Bless You All.


#16

If you have not consummated your marriage and if your wife refuses help and will not fulfill the marriage vows, an annulment may be something to consider. Difficult of course, but a marriage needs to be open to pro-creation and it seems safe to say that yours is not, up to this point.
You seem extremely patient. I think counseling for both of you may be in order as well as individual for her.

God bless,

Love and peace


#17

It would seem that past sexual encounters is a highly unlikely possibility. This is fortunate!

My strong hunch is that her anxiety is related to pregnancy, but I could be totally off. You didn’t mention how she is doing without the pill right now, or whether the pregnancy issue has been addressed again specifically since she got off it. This seems important to understanding what her motives or fears may be, but it is, of course, your prerogative to keep any of these details private.

That being said, let me point out four possible scenarios relating to the state of your marriage.

  1. If both parties agree to temporary or permanent continence (i.e. no sex) prior to consumating the marriage, it does not invalidate the marriage. It does, however, mean that the marriage is not indissoluble. Basically, if the marriage was brought before a tribunal, it would not even need a decree of nullity for both parties to be considered unmarried. Marriages of this nature are not considered invalid or illicit based on the lack of reproductive potential, but being that they are not procreative either, such marriages are intended to be an exception and not the norm. My moral theology is pretty weak in this area, so you’d have to consult someone with more knowledge if you’re curious.

  2. If one party willfully withholds sex from the other, that person is committing a grave sin. This means that with full knowledge and consent, a mortal sin is being committed, and the person is unable to licitly receive communion until going to confession. It does not, however, invalidate the marriage in and of itself. The motives would have to be examined to determine whether the marriage was valid on that basis.

  3. If one party is suffering from impotence (inability to render sex, whether due to psychological or physical limitations) that is permanent and incurable, the marriage is invalid, but neither are committing a grave sin.

  4. If one party is suffering from impotence that is impermanent or curable, the marriage is still valid unless that party refuses treatment to overcome the barrier. As in case 1, the marriage is not indissoluble if it was never consumated.

1 is not the case; otherwise you wouldn’t be posting here. The problem is that discerning among 2, 3, and 4 is difficult, and ultimately, your wife will have to decide for herself whether she is doing so willfully (sin of withholding the marital debt) or if she is paralyzed by some sort of fear or anxiety (impotence).

Honestly, it seems most like 4 to me, unless she is purposely and secretly manipulating you in order to avoid pregnancy. Her unwillingness to communicate this with you suggests that any attempt is subconscious, which points back to 4 again. She would then need to seek medical treatment or therapy to find out whether she can get past these issues and consumate the marriage with you. There is a specific time limit in which both spouses must demonstrate their ability to render, but I can’t remember what it is. If she cannot render, the marriage is invalid because she has demonstrated herself unable to render the marital debt. I know that sounds harsh, but that’s the sad reality of it. Of course, if you were confident she was making progress toward the ability to consumate, there would be no cause for any outside party to question the validity of your marriage anyway.


#18

[quote=johnsm]Here are some more answers.

"She very well may be afraid of "the pain ?"
That could be it, I never thought of it, because she is so tough. Once when she was a kid she had a broken arm for 3 days before telling her arm it hurt. But I never thought about what she may think about going into something that she knows might hurt. Thanks!!

.
[/quote]

This is not normal. A child who can go three days not telling someone that her arm is broke must have some serious issues. This isn’t an about being tough. Either she was afraid to tell, or she had suffered so much abuse that she was unable to distinguish pain. SImply because she isn’t forthcoming with stories of abuse doesn’t mean that it didn’t happen.


#19

[quote=Mom of 5]If you have not consummated your marriage and if your wife refuses help and will not fulfill the marriage vows, an annulment may be something to consider. Difficult of course, but a marriage needs to be open to pro-creation and it seems safe to say that yours is not, up to this point.
You seem extremely patient. I think counseling for both of you may be in order as well as individual for her.

God bless,

Love and peace

[/quote]

I was wondering this myself.


#20

No matter what, this is just NOT nomral in a marriage and she must know this, have you told her how you feel?? If so, what does she say? I’m sorry, but my husband would Never have let it gone this long, after a week or so he would have said, we get help NOW!! You can be understanding but this is simply not normal and if she keeps putting it off and getting away with that, she may think (well, we’ll just have a marriage without the sex act) I would set up an appointment with your parish priest and then tell her, we are going together and that is that. She is the one who truely knows what is holding her back and she is not telling the truth in this and it will drive a huge wedge in your marriage, a marriage based on secrets or lies is no marriage at all, get help right away.


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