What To Do When Desire For Your Spouse Fades

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Love, Sex

The passion is gone! Before doing anything drastic, see if these tips can help.

A recent article in Vanguard highlighted a very intimate and difficult problem for couples: that scenario where one partner has lost the sexual desire for the other.

Have you been feeling less sexual desire for your partner in a way that concerns you? Worried about what this might mean for your relationship — perhaps thinking is there something wrong with me or you both as a couple?

Well, maybe there is, but it could be just part of the expected ups and downs in sexual interest over the lifetime of a relationship.

Common libido-killers

Common issues affecting libido in both men and women are: stress, lack of time together, and negative relationship feelings. A word of caution: if desire is unusually low or there are problems in sexual functioning, first consult with a physician to rule out any physical causes such as medical disorders, hormonal imbalances, medication side-effects, etc.

After that, explore underlying emotional and relationship issues.

We live in a culture with so much focus on sexuality, there is a tendency to become overly anxious about naturally occurring dips in sexual interest that happen in a relationship. So first ask yourself whether there are major stressors affecting you in work, family, or other areas of life. Maybe all you have to do is to take practical steps to mange stress better. If you’re overextended, tired, or under more work stress, make a point to take better care of yourself. Exercise, eat right, and make sure you take time for doing things that give pleasure. For example, on the weekend, do something enjoyable and energizing rather than just cleaning the basement or doing other unpleasant chores. Renewed energy from relieving stress can revitalize your love life!

Take a good long look in the mirror.

Next, examine your relationship. Talk to your partner openly about whether you are giving the time needed to one another. Ask yourselves:

  • Are you making the relationship a high enough priority?
  • Have you put intimate time together too much on the back burner behind children and other domestic responsibilities?
  • Is passion suffering just due to lack of attention?
  • Are you the only one feeling less desire or is your partner also?
  • Is your partner doing something causing hurt, resentful, or angry feelings?
  • Is he or she not meeting your needs in important ways?
  • Ask your partner what they need to feel more deeply loved or happy in the relationship?
  • Do you need to simply try something new and different to spice up your sex life?

Openly explore all these issues respectfully. Talking honestly can help heal feelings when done in a sensitive and empathetic way. Otherwise the build-up of negative, bottled-up feelings can erode desire. If not successful in resolving these issues on your own, seek out a reputable couple’s therapist. You may take your relationship to an entirely new level you never thought possible!

Even in apparently hopeless situations, remarkable change is still possible. So no matter who you are and what your relationship situation, if desire wanes, take action. Do everything possible to renew that passionate spark in your relationship and keep it burning at its best for years to come!