It’s not something that’s talked about very often, but sexless marriages seem to be becoming more common. Either that or people are talking about the subject more than they used to do. Often when we meet someone who becomes our partner, we can hardly bear to be away from other, can hardly keep our hands off each other. But after a period of time, maybe you come to realize that you can’t remember when you last had sex. How did that happen? Are you going to do something about it, or do you feel alright about living in a sexless marriage?
Ups and downs
When it comes to sex, all relationships have their ups and downs. Sometimes you’re having regular sex, and other times, not so much. So, what’s the definition of a sexless marriage? If a couple has sex less than 10 times a year, they are considered by experts in the subject to be living in a sexless relationship.
This, according to experts, applies to between 15 and 20 percent of marriages. That’s up to a fifth of all marriages! And the thing is, it can happen so easily. All it takes is a difficult week or two that turns into a couple of months, and before you know it, you can hardly remember when you last had sex.
The real problem
According to a sex therapist, most people don’t like talking about their sex lives. The subject’s practically taboo, and admitting to being in a sexless marriage makes people even more uncomfortable. But is sex the barometer of a healthy relationship or not? The answer is no, not necessarily.
The real problem comes in when couples aren’t on the same page about their sex life. If both partners don’t want sex, there’s no disconnect, and they should stop worrying about it. But if one partner wants sex and the other doesn’t, this can lead to problems.
So many reasons
There’s no single thing that causes couples to stop having sex. It’s more like a myriad of things that all add up. However, experts agree on three common themes: lack of desire, having children, and a full schedule. Note that a lack of love doesn’t seem to be the problem. The broader problem in a sexless relationship seems to be a lack of connection and intimacy, which tends to spill over beyond bedroom walls.
So, can a marriage without sex work?
Well, if up to 20 percent of married couples aren’t having sex, it is indeed possible for a sexless marriage to work. Otherwise, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. The question is, how well does it work and is it worth staying in the relationship? Well, sometimes circumstances dictate a lack of sex. For example, there are medical conditions that make it inadvisable or impossible to have sex.
Many people would remain in marriage under such circumstances because their partner has no choice in the matter. And if a woman has recently given birth, she may not be able to have sex or not feel like it. But medical issues aside, people differ in whether or not they’d stick out a relationship if it became sexless. Some say that a marriage without sex is a lost cause.
Television psychologist Dr. Phil McGraw belongs to this camp. He says that when desire in a marriage declines, the consequences for the relationship can be serious. Others say that if you love the other person, and are committed to them, you’ll find a way of solving the problem together. Some, however, just avoid talking about the issue. Whatever anyone says, more sexless marriages survive than you might imagine. Up to 20 percent!
So, what to do?
If you both want sex back in your relationship, make time for it. If only one of you wants sex, try talking. Some people trade little or no sex for an otherwise good relationship. If both of you don’t want sex, there’s nothing to worry about.