The sexual relationship of a couple is one of the important aspects of their married life. But for some married couples, sex is no longer part of their relationship. They are living and raising children together but sex is no longer something they do. But how do they reach that point? Why does it happen and are they truly happy?
These are just some of the questions that come to mind. Sex is a natural thing between a married couple and is a way for greater intimacy, conversations and honesty. When that is missing from a relationship, can the couple be truly happy and satisfied with the relationship?
First of all, what is a sexless marriage? A marriage is considered sexless if the couple only have sex once a month or less. Moreover, once a week is considered a more normal or average amount. That’s because couples who have it that often seem to have happier marriages according to research. Obviously in reality this frequency can vary from one couple to the next.
Most marriages don’t start off sexless but somehow it happens over time. For some couples, life just somehow gets in the way. They are working, have young kids and are simply just too tired. For others it can be as a result of slightly deeper issues. For some women, body image can really affect their self-esteem. This in turn just puts them off being intimate with their husbands. Also, for some women, they see sex in a reproductive light only and not something for enjoyment.
But this isn’t a women-only issue. Many men have various sexual issues too. They can have lower sex drives then that of their wives. Also being constantly criticised and moaned at can really affect their performance, if you know what I mean. There may well be resentment in the relationship too. If he feels hurt by something his wife said and the issue has never been dealt with, then it can really affect the way he treats his wife in the bedroom.
Besides these issues, there can actually be physical and medical issues that make sex painful or affect the person’s sex drive. Things like hormonal or long-term medical conditions can really make a person hate being intimate.
If the couple are not intimate then why do they even stay together? What’s the point if they are living in what can be seen as an unsatisfying relationship on an intimate level? For many couples, the relationship works for them in other ways. They may love each other deeply, take care of each other and generally otherwise get on, therefore are prepared to ignore the sex part. Also staying in the marriage means sacrificing their needs in order to keep their family together. On a more emotional aspect, for some the fear of being alone stops them leaving or speaking out. Not to mention there is the whole shame aspect. In our community asking for help or advice about sex is seen as a big ‘no-no’. On a practical level, simply not being financially independent can stop a spouse leaving.
If you are in a sexless marriage, then how do you overcome this issue? Should you just carry on and pretend it’s ok while possibly setting yourself up to harbour years of resentment? Simply ignoring the issue can have a devastating impact on the relationship in the long-term. It can even lead to an affair or divorce. Dealing with it is frankly for the good of the marriage and the whole family.
So how should a couple bring back the intimacy in their relationship? For a start, talk about it and try to understand what the root cause is. Don’t expect your husband to be a mind reader and tell them exactly how you feel. Do your best to negotiate because that’s what really makes relationships work. Whatever the issue is, do your best to meet half way and bring the physical side of your relationship back.
If you are both always busy then make your alone time priority, even if it’s a quiet dinner at home without the kids around. Whatever you do, do it now before you reach a point where you both just don’t care anymore. It is always better to speak up then live with years of regret about what you could have done and put your trust in Allah to guide you to the right path.
Have you successfully overcome this? Can you relate? Let us know in the comments.
Mum to three teenagers and a little one, master of none. My faith in Allah is what gets me through every situation. For everything else, humour and solace in chocolate is the way to go! The go to person for my straight talking no nonsense approach to life I love sharing my perspective and believe that speaking from the heart will get you where you need to be.