Why are you staying in loveless marriage?


Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: This is in response to 65 Year-Old Man with a 45-year-old Approach to Life who complained about his wife’s lack of desire. Really? I would love to hear her side! Methinks she would speak the truth and put an honest spin on “Mr. Romance, I need stimulation.”

I also live in a sexless, lonely marriage. Sports and drinking are his first loves. He gained a lot of weight in our early years together and ignores his doctor’s advice to lose it. He used to fall asleep on top of me after having sex, snore all night and awaken refreshed while I stumbled through my day exhausted from lack of sleep.

I struggled through years of feeling very lonely as he isn’t a talker. We stopped going out to restaurants because he doesn’t talk, and I got tired of having a one-way conversation. I cook great meals and keep a lovely home because it gives me a lift. He has done some pretty horrible things in our years together, and I chose to be the loyal wife and stood by his side. He has never protected me, never looks into my eyes or has romantic conversations with me.

We have no dreams, no goals and no desires. He gets excited when there are two hockey games on TV at the same time. How could I possibly get stimulated enough to be intimate with this man? If I could write a song describing our life together, it would be titled “I lost me when I met you.”

— Sadly Coping, Winnipeg


Dear Sadly Coping: And your husband is sadly coping too, as you are not intimate with him and don’t like his personality anymore. Why did you stay and waste all those years? Why not leave now and both of you can salvage the years you have left? The divorce taboo is over, and there’s nothing worse than feeling desperately lonely while trapped with somebody who keeps you from finding a companion with mutual interests to love, enjoy and have a sexual relationship with.

Are you unable to work and support yourself? It’s not too late to change your life. In fact, you would be free and less lonely if you dumped this man who is such a negative influence. You sound like platonic roommates. What was he like in the beginning? Why did you marry him? Why stay after he did “some pretty horrible things?”

Life on this planet (if you are lucky enough to have the wherewithal to live, eat and be comfortable) is a gift to make much of. People can do that if they surround themselves with the right people. You know he is wrong for you. You’re being loyal to someone you say is causing you to lose your very self — your soul. You can’t give that away to anybody. It’s all any of us have.


-Michael Forman (Author of sexless story SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman


Surviving a Sexless Marriage.

In reality, surviving a sexless marriage is impossible.  The best thing you can do really is to try and fix it.  Do not suffer through it.


Instead of merely surviving a sexless marriage, I want to encourage you to do more.  You can’t survive a relationship that exists with no intimacy.  You must either move on, or repair your relationship so that you can bring the fire back in your life.

Surviving a sexless marriage is not enough.

I want you to fix it because miracles do occur, and you never know. it could be your relationship that gets the miracle. Surviving a sexless marriage is not only possible it’s expected if you follow all of the available advice.

The problem CAN be fixed

It’s not enough to try and just survive in a sexless marriage. Surviving a sexless marriage is the minimum goal. Let’s go beyond that and find a happy, balanced marriage.


Don’t allow your sexual frustrations to bubble over; don’t wait to get angry, feel rejected and not feel good about yourself. Part of surviving a sexless marriage is realizing how bad you are feeling while in it.  If you start blaming your partner for the situation you could only make things worse.

There could be a very simple and easily understandable reason for your sexless marriage. To move forward, you need to find out what the cause of your sexless relationship is.

First, I want you to work on your attitude. Surviving a sexless marriage really does come down to your mental approach. In fact you’ve got to be mentally tough. I want to encourage you not to put up with a substandard relationship. A key to surviving a sexless marriage is not tolerating things that you don’t like.  This is about self respect.

Have higher standards for your marriage!

There isn’t a benefit for putting up with a low-quality marriage. This WILL affect your happiness and other areas of your life. It’s mentally draining and hard to live with, as I’m sure you’ve already found out. This kind of a marriage limits what you do with your life.

The attitude that you will simply “surivive” a sexless marriage is the kind of attitude that will not only prolong it but will lead to your unhappiness in life. For example, take two couples. In the first relationship, the husband is a heavy smoker and the wife hates it. She complains about it but doesn’t do anything about it.

In the other relationship, the man is a heavy smoker and the wife hates it. Instead of complaining about it, she does something about it. Every time she catches her husband smoking she leaves for a period of time or she kicks him out for a period of time.

The first wife wants change but isn’t going after it. The second wife wants change and decides to create change.  See the big difference?

Guess which wife is going to get her husband to stop smoking? It’s the same with your sexless marriage. It’s time for you to play hardball.

You’ve got to take it more seriously and make more of a point that you won’t tolerate it. You will need to be able to provide other options for your partner which may involve finding a good relationship therapist.

Even if sex isn’t the most important thing in your partner’s life, it will still be important to them if they know it is important to you.

Now that you’ve read tips on surviving a sexless marriage, don’t miss my FREE video presentation that’ll show you how to rebuild the chemistry you once had. If you know the 4 stages of a relationship and which ones are best to be in…your sex life and marriage will never be boring ever again. Click here NOW for the powerful secret to success.

– See more at: http://blog.relationshiprewind.com/tips-for-surviving-a-sexless-marriage#sthash.nDtRaH7f.dpuf



6 Foolish Ways You Make Your Sexless Marriage Even WORSE

doing wrongIf you’re honest, you’re the real barrier here … but you don’t have to be.

According to statistics, more than 40 million Americans find themselves in a sexless marriage. (This doesn’t include all of the non-married relationships or the rest of the world.)

More than half the couples I counsel each week have not had sex with their partner in over a year. A large number of these couples are over 40 years of age and use the changes to their physiology as their excuse to avoid sexual intimacy.

For others, sex ended with the birth of their children or due to plain ‘ol repetition and boredom.

However, these are all excuses for the real issue. Can’t quite put your finger on it? Here are some of the top “reasons” couples settle for a sexless relationship:

1. You don’t like talking about sex
While many couples are uncomfortable talking about sex, in my experience, they’re generally not comfortable talking about anything with each other and have huge communication issues. After tons of medical advances I’ve yet to hear of anyone reading minds, thus, it’s important that you sit down and discuss your pleasures and desires (both current and potential) with your spouse. Be sure the two of you build a safe place, for you to discuss these topics without judgment.


2. You don’t really understand the mechanics of sexuality and lust 
There are specific stages that sexual activity generally move through (desire, arousal, plateau, orgasm, refractory) and many couples don’t understand how to utilize this knowledge for the deepest, and most satisfying connection.

3. You’re on antidepressants 
Many antidepressants, typically, have a sexual side-effect profile, which can typically impact many men and women. Perhaps, speak to your doctor about alternatives or new ways to boost your libido.

4. You rarely get enough sleep
In our under-slept culture, sleep deficiency drains us of energy for sex play, thus impacting our mood and desire for intimacy. Make sure you’re catching the recommended amount of z’s for the best performance possible.

5. You’re ignoring the effects of aging
As the “baby boomers” advance in age, issues involving menopause and erectile dysfunction become more prevalent. If this is the case, I recommend getting your doctor’s opinion. These types of conditions don’t have to mean the end of your sex life, it simply means adapting.

6. You view the sexual problems as your partner’s issue, instead of yours as a couple
Issues of shame and guilt prevent us from acknowledging, communicating, and solving our sexual issues as a team. The sooner you can admit and pinpoint your role in any issues the two of you are having in the bedroom, the sooner you can get things booming again.

If you are experiencing some of this and have a question for me, I hold a free tele-seminar every month where I answer your most important questions about relationships, romance, intimacy or sexuality. You can find out more at askadamnow.com

-Source http://www.yourtango.com/experts/dr–adam-sheck/6-causes-sexless-marriage

Finding Joy in the Sexless Marriage

Couple holding stop sign in bed

Why do relationships become sexless and how do couples cope?

We’ve come to assume that the long-term intimate relationship involves physical as well as emotional closeness. However, couples may decide for a variety of reasons that sex is not a key feature of their particular relationship. Over time, some may evolve through a set of phases from passionate to companionate marriage. For other long-term relationships, however, the ties that bind are intrinsically linked to physical expressions of affection. What determines which couples choose the sexless route and which remain sexually active well into their later years?

A recent New York Times interview(link is external) with family sociologist Denise Donnelly explored the factors that contribute to sexless marriages, incorporating data from the General Social Survey to understand how these relationships come about and what keeps them going. I decided to explore the published literature on the topic and came across a 2008 paper written by Donnelly and fellow sociologist Elizabeth Burgess. This landmark paper identified the complex factors leading up to the sexless marriage and points to ways that couples in these relationships adapt and evolve over time.


The paper by Donnelly and Burgess is based on social exchange theory, a perspective that emphasizes the costs and benefits of remaining in a long-term relationship.  Applying this lens to the sexless marriage, the authors looked specifically at the case of “involuntary celibacy” in which partners remain sexless for 6 months or more.  “Sexless” in this case is defined as not having any physically pleasuring sexual activity not because the couples choose to become celibate, but because circumstances lead to this outcome.

According to social exchange theory, women who would otherwise prefer a relationship involving sex stay in one that does not because they regard the costs of being on their own as higher than the possible rewards of being on their own and free to have sex with someone else. Traditionally, particularly as they get older, women have fewer options to have sexual partners than do men because the older woman is seen as less sexually desirable than her same-age male counterparts. Women may also, traditionally, be more dependent on their husbands for financial support (though this is changing) or at least feel that they couldn’t raise their children alone.

Adding to this basic formula are the investments that couples make in relationships in terms of the time and effort they put into their marriage. The more they invest in their marriage, the greater the likelihood they’ll stay in it. In terms of sexuality, social prescriptions also play a role. These include the social norms that committed couples remain sexually exclusive backed up by the legal norms that make it difficult for couples to end their relationship when it becomes less than satisfying.

With this backdrop, let’s examine the reasons that couples choose celibacy in their committed relationships:

  1. The passage of time.  The longer a relationship endures, the greater the chances that the couple’s sexual fires will diminish. Even so, many older adults do remain sexually active. For aging women, the issue may be not only one of time changing the nature of the relationship but the fact that their partners are no longer alive or are in poor health.
  2. Stressors in the relationship. Even relatively young couples can become voluntarily celibate if they are facing enough outside pressures. Late in a woman’s pregnancy, the couple may decide to cease having sex, and even after the baby is born, she and/or her partner may simply not have the energy to engage in sexual activity. Eventually, most couples do become sexually active again after 6 months, but they may then run into other competing demands on their emotional energy.
  3. Illness in one or both partners. The development of chronic physical or mental illness isn’t necessarily the deal-killer when it comes to sex, but it may significantly interfere with one or both partner’s libido. It may be fairly obvious how physical illness can become a limiting factor, but as Donnelly and Burgess point out, people with psychological disorders may lose sexual interest as a result of medication or self-doubts associated with stigma.  Declines in sexual activity can also contribute to mental health problems, particularly if one or both partners feel that they are less attractive and desirable than they once were.
  4. Guilt or conflict. Certainly, many people with strong religious convictions continue to enjoy a satisfying sex life, particularly if their religion places high value on propagation. However, a lifetime of being exposed to religious teachings that place proscriptions on oral sex and masturbation may leak over and hamper the expression of sexual activity within even the marriage.

What happens when couples find themselves having slipped, for any of these reasons (or others) into celibacy? Is their relationship doomed? According to Donnelly and Burgess, the impact of involuntary sexlessness depends in part on a person’s reference group. Going back to the social exchange perspective, if they see their own celibacy as not that different from that of others in their own normative group (based on age, gender, illness status,religiosity) then entirely negative outcomes may be mitigated. In general, sexual activity is positively linked to relationship satisfaction, but there are still couples who don’t fit this pattern. They can maintain high relationship quality because their view of their relationship has shifted to define the sexless life as normative.

On the other hand, if a couple is celibate because their sexual relationship was unsatisfying or unfulfilling, then it stands to reason that they will experience high levels of sexual dissatisfaction. They may also start to stray from the marriage and seek sexual gratification in an extramarital affair which may exact a high emotional toll both on the cheater and the cheated-upon.

Despite these potentially negative consequences, couples do decide to remain in the relationship rather than leave their partner. From the exchange theory perspective, they feel they’ve already invested so much time and energy into the relationship that it would take a great deal to tear them apart. They may also value the shared affection they experience in non-sexual ways, what Donnelly and Burgess call “we-ness.” The social supports of remaining together as a couple, if not a family, also keep the sexless couple together. Emotionally, a couple may remain together in a sexless marriage because their partner is their best friend or their “ideal” partner.

In examining the data from a sample of 77 couples, Donnelly and Burgess identified a handful of basic strategies. About one-third gave up and stopped asking their partner.  Others sought sexual gratification outside the marriage. For the majority, investing their energy in other things (work, school, hobbies) provided the greatest emotional relief. Some redefined thestress of their relationship as a challenge of their coping abilities and sought spiritual or self-growth. For another third of the sample, though, marriage or sexual counseling was the preferred route though, by definition, this intervention was ineffective for the current sample.

Sifting through the information provided by this unique study, it appears that one of the key factors is perceiving that the rewards of being together with your partner outweigh the costs of leaving.  Love, shared values, and mutual goals, values, and experiences are the glue that can keep a sexless relationship going. Coping with a sexless relationship may involve a variety of strategies, then, whether or not that relationship occurs within the context of marriage. If you’re in a relationship in which you are celibate due to circumstances outside of your control, if you’re like the majority of people in this study, you find ways to cope.

Knowing that you’re not alone may be the greatest solace in coping with a sexless relationship. Social norms may make you feel like an oddity and the distress you experience may be very real. It’s possible that, like some of the least happy in the Donnelly and Burgess study, you decide to leave the relationship. Even though it may be difficult, however, it is possible to find ways to work through its challenges.

Follow me on Twitter @swhitbo for daily updates on psychology, health, and aging. Feel free to join my Facebook group, “Fulfillment at Any Age,” to discuss today’s blog, or to ask further questions about this posting.

Copyright Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D. 2014 


Donnelly, D. A., & Burgess, E. O. (2008). The decision to remain in an involuntarily celibate relationship. Journal Of Marriage And Family, 70(2), 519-535. doi:10.1111/j.1741-3737.2008.00498.x

Source: https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/fulfillment-any-age/201402/finding-joy-in-the-sexless-marriage

-Michael Forman (Author of sexless story SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman


A new survey has revealed that one in three couples (32%) in a long term relationship or marriage have sex so infrequently now that they can’t remember the last time they had it, with one in ten (10%) even admitting to no longer having a sexual relationship at all.

The study by The Fantasy Box also shows that 61% of those surveyed admit to enjoying a better sex life in previous relationships, with over a third of couples (38%) aged 25-44 blaming family life getting in the way, and nearly half (49%) putting it down to not having the confidence to communicate regularly about their sexual fantasies desires.

For younger couples aged 18-25, work life priorities were cited as the most common reason (19%), and for the grey generation aged 55 plus, not feeling as fit as healthy as they once affected half (50%) of respondents.

Over a third (39%) also admitted to hiding their sexual fantasies from their current partner, stating also (38%) that they just don’t talk about sex anymore. Over a quarter also confessed to being scared of their partners’ reaction (27%) and suffering from a lack of confidence in the bedroom department (27%).

For those couples citing sex as the number one “elephant in the room” in their relationship, nearly a quarter (24%) felt there was not enough information on products and services out there out there to support affected relationships. Half of these of these respondents (50%) suggested they would consider trying dedicated date nights, with nearly one in five (18%) admitting to wanting to experiment more with sex toys to spice things up.


Mariah Byrne, the co-founder of The Fantasy Box said: “This research shows just how much our sex lives are suffering, and how much of an impact it’s having on the happiness of even the most committed relationships. But it’s not that we don’t want it, we just don’t talk about what we really want!

“Our research showed that whilst a quarter (25%) of the UK have read 50 Shades of Grey, (raising to over a third for those couples aged 18-34) many more of us are too afraid to share our own fantasies with our partners or even talk about sex at all. It appears we’re happy to read about it, but when it comes to our own relationships, we take the stiff upper lip approach and become rather reserved!

“As a woman, I founded The Fantasy Box with my partner Chris with one mission – to bring back our happy sex lives! We believe that a happy sex life is one of the, if not the, most important elements in a happy long term relationship. And it all starts with talking to your partner, sharing what you really want, getting over the fear of rejection or embarrassment. And then doing it! So we started a subscription service that will not only help you take your intimacy to the next level, but also rediscover your relationship, inside the bedroom and out. Our aim is make monogamy the sexiest thing on the planet!”


1. Doctor & Nurse
2. French Maid
3. Schoolgirl
4. Secretary
5. Playgirl Bunny
6. Air Hostess
7. Firefighter
8. Masseuse
9. Victoria’s Secret Angel
10. Policeman

The Fantasy Box launched in the UK on 13th-15th November at Sexpo, and aims to help partners discover what they like, both individually, and as a couple, through communication and discovery. For more information on the revolutionary date night tool, please visit www.thefantasybox.com.

Source: http://www.sourcewire.com/news/89141/the-rise-of-the-sexless-relationship-one-in-three-couples#.Vk2lQtIrJNB

Is sex really the secret to a happy marriage?


Sex seems to be one of those topics that can take on a life of it’s own. Whether we’re seeing it played out in movies by Diane Keaton and Jack Nicholson in Something’s Gotta Give, reading about it in graphic detail in popular books like 50 Shades of Grey, or hearing about George Clooney’s latest ‘conquest’ (before he married his now-wife of course), it seems like sex is everywhere and everyone is doing it.

But how much about this fantasy of an over-active sex life is actually real? If we were to believe everything we read on the internet and popular media, we’d be forgiven for thinking the whole world is full of frisky couples who can’t keep their hands off each other. When it comes to real life though, it’s a different story.

adSEETHINGSA new survey of 5,000 people in long-term relationships has found that most couples rate sex as an unimportant factor in their relationship. When asked the question: “How important is sex in keeping a couple happy and in love?” the majority of couples agreed sex just wasn’t that important in the grand scheme of things.

In fact, 66% of couples said they are happy to have sex only three times a month. Instead of sex, these couples valued other things like laughing together, being cared for, feeling safe, and being happy as much more meaningful and significant in maintaining a healthy and happy marriage.

While we’re often told a sexless marriage is something to be feared and fixed; the reality is though, most people are happy to keep the sex to a minimum. That’s not to say there aren’t couples who enjoy getting physical more than a few times a week. The point the survey makes though, is that if you’re in a relationship that’s more about hugs and kisses than wild nights in the bedroom, you’re not alone – you’re not even unique!

When asked “What do you like best about your relationship?” these were the top answers:

1. Laughing together.
2. Sharing values and interests.
3. Being best friends.
4. Being cared for and feeling supported.
5. Feeling safe and secure.
6. Being happy.
7. Trust.
8. Sharing a close relationship.
9. Talking and listening.
10. Being in love and/or being loved.

They all sound like pretty good answers!

Source: http://startsatsixty.com.au/the-big-question/is-sex-really-the-secret-to-a-happy-marriage

-Michael Forman (Author of sexless story SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman

Mother-of-three offers to pay for her husband to visit a prostitute… as she can no longer face having sex with him

Sexless marriage couple

A WOMAN offered her husband the chance to visit a prostitute as the pair live together in a sexless marriage.

Mum-of-three Sara Collins, 46, and her husband Graham, 47, have slept in separate bedrooms for over five years.

The couple, from Sussex, have three children: Ella, 15, Jude, 11, Jake, seven.

After having kids, Sara claims that she felt less of an urge to have sex.

She explained: “I had a number of miscarriages so when I did get pregnant Graham didn’t want to touch me for safety reasons.

“Then when I was breastfeeding he found it inappropriate for us to have sex.”

When their youngest son Jake turned two, the couple moved into separate bedrooms because they were both keeping each other awake from snoring.

Even though Sara claims she still fancies her husband, they’re now living in a sexless marriage.

Unfazed Graham assures: “I have gone past caring, I don’t bother asking anymore.”

Sara isn’t worried that Graham might turn his affections to another woman.

She said: “We have an open, honest relationship, we talk about everything and that is the most important thing.”

At one point, Sara even suggested that Graham went to see a prostitute if sex was “that important to him”.

She confessed: “We are very open about having an affair.

“If either of us felt the need to go and have an affair and be intimate with someone as long as we have had that conversation if it fine, we have had that agreement all our relationship.”

Research reveals that living in a sexless marriage isn’t uncommon, with one in four couples admitting the intimacy has fizzled.

This Morning relationship expert Annabelle Knight advised the couple that having sex was important in a relationship.

She said: “Like going to the gym, you might not feel like it but when you are there you will be glad you went.”

Source (with video included): http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/features/6948710/Mum-of-three-says-she-would-pay-for-her-husband-to-visit-a-prostitute-as-she-can-no-longer-face-having-sex-with-him.html

-Michael (Author of sexless story in SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman

6 Month Relationship Turns Sexless

5143I have been seeing a guy for about six months now and he is great — intelligent, attractive, creative, hilarious. We behave as a couple in all ways, but our relationship is at the moment sexless. Over the duration of us seeing each other, we have only ever had sex twice, the second time being almost two months ago now. The first time he was unable to perform, was incredibly embarrassed, and I think he may still be hung up about that even though I assured him it wasn’t a big deal to me at all. We definitely still have chemistry and even talk sexually all the time, but he’s been coming up with excuses not to do it. I really care about and am attracted to my guy, but I’m not sure how to bring up his hesitancy toward sex without potentially hurting his pride. After getting shut down a few times, I’m also lacking in confidence to just go for it and initiate sex, so we are in a real rut. What should I do?
When guys have trouble performing, they often get squirrelly. As hard as it can be for a guy to get it up, it can be harder for him to get over it. And performance anxiety is just that — anxiety. People react to anxiety in all kinds of ways, and it sounds like your guy is avoiding his, which is completely normal but not particularly productive.

It’s lovely that you worry about hurting his pride, but you’re right: You do need to find a way to bring this up. Since he’s shutting you down when you make a pass, I think the best option is probably to gently but seriously raise the issue. Then, don’t let him dodge or cut off the conversation.

Start with flattery. Tell him what you told me — that he’s “great, intelligent, attractive, creative, hilarious.” And tell him you think he’s hot. Tell him you think sex is an important part of any relationship, then say, “I want to have sex with you, so let’s figure this out.” Notice I said, “Let’sfigure this out.” Yes, he’s the one who was “unable to perform,” but both of you need to work on your sexual relationship.


-Michael Forman (Author of sexless story SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman

Sexlessish Marriage Less Sexless During Affair

I’m a thirty-something hetro female, married for almost 16 years with three kids. Like many couples who have been together a long time, my husband and I have grown apart. I know this can be improved but there is part of the relationship that I am not sure can be fixed. Specifically, I have zero sexual attraction to him. But I don’t know if this is related to us not making enough effort to maintain a good relationship and the attraction can come back with effort or if it gone forever. I don’t want to split up my family but I also don’t see how I can stay in this marriage when I never want to fuck my husband.

Marriage couple marital problems in bed. Sex problem or other. W

Making it all worse is the fact that I had a brief affair with a coworker and of course, the sex was amazing. I have never had such a strong physical attraction as I do to him. We’ve ended it but I still see him frequently at work, so it’s a constant reminder of the sexual passion that is lacking in my relationship. I’m committed to trying to make things work with my husband but in your experience, is it possible to save a marriage when the physical chemistry is lacking for one partner?

Lack Of Sexual Tension


Quick question: When you were having that affair… did you find yourself having more sex (or any sex) with your husband? — Dan

Initially we did have more sex. I think on some subconscious level he knew something was going on because he suddenly was initiating sex a lot more. — LOST

The sex with your husband during your affair: was it sex you enjoyed? Were you more attracted to—or open to, or interested in—sex with your husband during your affair? — Dan

I enjoyed it because, physically speaking, my husband knows what I like. But I closed my eyes and pretended he was my lover. I wasn’t more attracted to my husband but I found myself turning him down less during the time I was having an affair. I think partly out of a sense of guilt and partly because I was constantly in a state of feeling turned on during the affair. — LOST

Monogamy is gonna kill your marriage—eventually you’ll want out (because you’re gonna wanna to have sex with someone you actually wanna have sex with), or your husband is gonna want out (because there’s only so much rejection he can take).

You have two choices, LOST:

1. Resume discreetly cheating on your husband, aka doing what you need to do to stay married and stay sane. The fact that your affair improved his sex life too, since your state of near-constant arousal led you to reject your husband less often, should take a little edge off the guilt.

2. Ask your husband to open up your marriage. You do it honestly and directly (“Let’s have sex with other people, okay?”) or less honestly and less directly (“I don’t want out of our marriage, I love him and I love our family, but the sex has broken and I wouldn’t blame you—and I wouldn’t divorce you—if you sought sex elsewhere.”)

Good luck. — Dan

Source: http://www.thestranger.com/slog/2016/03/03/23663378/savage-love-letter-of-the-day

No sex, please, we can’t be bothered

Lust and sex, we’re constantly reminded, are far from the preserve of the young.

1455331770741Just ask Dame Helen Mirren, who last year, aged 69, pronounced her sex life “great, just wonderful”; a step up from the “paranoid and empty” encounters of her youth.

Not only are happily married older couples supposedly swinging as madly from the chandeliers as their children, but the silver singles are on Tinder, too, these days, having affairs via the Ashley Madison website, or shopping till their arches drop in Agent Provocateur.

Indeed, psychologists and doctors positively urge us to “get it on” as often as possible as we get older, for the good of our mental and physical health. Moreover, a “Sex Census” in 2012, jointly funded by Relate and Ann Summers, suggested that most of us are so bogged down in our thirties and forties with mortgage payments and childcare that it’s only when we hit our fifties that all systems are truly go. Sexual confidence, it suggested, peaks between the ages of 60 and 69.

Can this riotous image of free love among the Hip Op Generation really paint the full picture? Not according to a new survey, out yesterday, which found that one in four couples over 50 never make love at all.

If this finding sounds bleak, additional research released alongside it should leave us all feeling a bit brighter. Because the “sexless seniors” who were surveyed agreed that, despite the apparently chilly nights, they couldn’t be happier – revelling in the renewed space this gave for companionship, conversation and humour to take the fore in their relationship.

Cari Rosen, editor of the website Gransnet, which carried out the research among 634 of its users, aged 51 to 85, said: “While passion is undoubtedly important for most people, it turns out that the glue in successful long-term relationships is compassion, kindness, generosity and friendship – which is advice that people of any age can use.”


Yorkshire-based housewife Clare*, 54, certainly agrees. She and John, also 54, have been married for 19 years, but haven’t been intimate for the past eight.

“It’s funny to think back on the early days of our relationship and realise how important sex was to us both then,” she says now, describing their sexual attraction and adventurous physical relationship as the “glue” that initially bound them together, after they met at work. “I always joked that I noticed his beautiful bum before I even saw his face.”

Since then, the couple have enjoyed a strong and happy marriage, despite “a few bumps in the road” – post-natal depression for Clare, after the birth of their now 18-year-old son; and, for John, being made redundant from his job in engineering at 48, which plunged him into a full-scale mid-life crisis. “But, on balance, we remain a loving and committed couple.”

Lack of sex does not equate to physical distance: “We still need the closeness of sharing a bed every night. We still kiss and cuddle up on the sofa, walk hand-in-hand, and enjoy a tactile, physically affectionate relationship.”

So why have they not made love for so long? Clare puts their sex-free existence down to jointly waning libidos. “I went off sex when I was approaching the menopause, which is not untypical. It became uncomfortable and, eventually, undesirable.

“John said he understood. He’d just been made redundant and was doing a lot of soul-searching, so I think sex was probably not much in his thoughts then anyway.

“I thought my libido would make a comeback after the menopause, but it didn’t. ‘What if it never comes back?’ I asked John in bed one night, and he said it was nothing to worry about. We’re in our fifties, we’re fit and healthy and still very much in love with each other. There’s no benefit in fretting about sex if neither of us is bothered about having it.”

Clare adds: “Sex isn’t how we love each other now; it’s no longer part of the fabric of our relationship, and that’s absolutely fine, because we both feel the same way about it.

“It’s as if we have moved to a place beyond sex. I would worry for my marriage if we weren’t tender and loving in other ways, but we are – and have always been – open with each other about our feelings.”

Not everyone approves of this surrender to non-sexuality. Arlene Heyman, a 73-year-old psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, whose new book Scary Old Sex has just been published by Bloomsbury, told the Telegraph last week: “Do not let yourself be pushed into the persona of an asexual person. That doesn’t mean flaunt your sexuality. But it’s masochism to accept less than a full life.”

Petra Boynton, a psychologist specialising in sex research, is more circumspect. “There are a number of things that connect people,” she said, in response to the 2012 survey, “but we are constantly spun this line that the glue to a relationship is sex, and without it one’s relationship will fall apart, and I think there are a lot of commercial reasons why that message is put out. That’s not just insulting, it’s pernicious.”

So what is the new “relationship glue” in Clare and John’s life?

“We used to make love until dawn in the early days. Today, we’d rather put on our boots and head up into the Dales for a long walk and a pub lunch, or catch a flight to Paris or Budapest to explore the city for a weekend.

“We both love cooking and homemaking, taking to the road in our vintage MG, spending time with our son, who’ll be leaving for university soon, and dreaming about buying a dilapidated property in France that we can renovate in our dotage.”

As all manner of sexual behaviour becomes less taboo, the irony is that not having sex at all now feels like it’s a sordid secret.

“I know people will judge the path we have chosen,” says Clare, who won’t discuss the celibate state of her happy marriage openly, even with close friends. “They will say there must be something wrong, something missing, in a sexless marriage; that there is something unnatural about our celibacy. But that’s not how we see it.

“Sex is so irrelevant to me, in fact, that I don’t even think it would be a deal-breaker if John had it with someone else. It would shock me, but it would make no sense to call time on my marriage simply because John had chosen to find, elsewhere, something that he knew wasn’t available at home.

“Anyway, I’m confident that, like me, he cherishes and respects our relationship, and would be unlikely to put it in jeopardy for something we have both grown to regard as extraneous.”

And as Dame Helen Mirren well knows, there is nothing more attractive than confidence. Even sex.

Additional reporting: Mandy Appleyard

*Some names have been changed

 Source: http://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/love-sex/76857794/no-sex-please-we-cant-be-bothered

-Michael Forman (Author of sexless story SEETHINGS) Subscribe to blog.

The Novel ¦The Author ¦ Orde
SEETHINGS novel by Michael Forman

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