Here’s how to talk about sex drive issues with your partner…

Having a partner with a different type of sex drive can cause conflict.

I felt like I was hugely letting my partner down by my lack of desire, and when you can’t work out what’s wrong or how to make your sex drive come back to life, it feels pretty shitty, and never-ending.

If you’re reading this post, it’s likely that this issue has already come up in your relationship anyhow. If you’re anything like me, you’ll feel like having “the chat” is terrifying…

“I’m shit at WANTING to have sex? Great, now lets have a conversation alllllll about it!”

Up until writing this blog, I’ve felt like there was something wrong with me and felt really disappointed that I was the problem in our relationship. I tried to avoid the issue as much as I could, but when it came up I always felt defensive or ashamed, and a chasm opened up between me and the boyf filled with resentment, anxiety, misunderstanding and loneliness.

But genuinely talking about the issue, openly and honestly, works wonders for decreasing that space between you and your partner and is one step closer to firing up that sex drive. Here’s how I did it…

EXPLAINING THE ISSUES IN THE BEDROOM

I think it’s always a good plan to have those “serious chats” when you are doing something else to occupy your mind. Not sat opposite each other intensely staring each other down. Or in bed at the end of a long day (trust me, not a good plan!). But maybe whilst going for a walk, cooking dinner or washing up. That way there is no awkward eye contact, and you both feel more relaxed. I broke the conversation with the boyf whilst driving. It was good.

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I explained to him that I’d been reading recently and I’d found out a bit more about different types of sex drives and I’d really like to talk about what I found. His ears pricked up (might have been the mention of the word sex!). I could feel myself going red, retreating into myself, feeling like I wanted to change the topic, but I stuck with it.

I told him about the different types of desire, and how for some people it goes desire>arousal, but I think I’m more of a arousal>desire kinda girl. And it went great!

HIS RESPONSE:

The boyf was really interested in what I’d found, and a lot of it made sense to him. He said he thought I didn’t think about sex a lot, and I am shy in coming forwards with my desires. He also wanted to know more from me about what I needed from him, and talked about his experiences of desire and arousal. For him, sex was completely about pleasure- for both of us. He also recognised that he thinks about sex a lot, and it came naturally to him to want sex more because of this. He was also sad I’d kept this to myself and wanted to know more about how I felt, and what would help me get turned on.

For me, a huge weight felt like it’d been lifted- it was all out in the open, I wasn’t a freak (it felt easier to explain that it’s backed up by science and experiments and real sciency people!). And most of all, I got to go on a great feminist rant about sex drives and he listened. Fab all round!

WHAT I LEARNED:

Most importantly (for those of you wanting to try this at home) the conversation was such a positive experience. It brought us closer together. I learned loads about how someone else thinks about sex, especially someone of the opposite gender, and for the first time we were both open with each other about our feelings around what is a pretty awkward topic. I’d genuinely recommend it! Silence breeds resentment, frustration and isn’t healthy for anyone. The more we’re talking, the closer we are becoming because of it.

PREPARE TO CHAT

Obviously, I was super nervous about broaching the topic. I wasn’t sure how he’d react, and when we’d spoken about sex before it seemed to just end up me feeling like I was an alien because my sex drive wasn’t like his. But since then, we’ve gradually spoken more and more about the issue and he can see how hard I’m trying.

So, to help keep you calm and on point, my top tips for speaking to your partner are:

  • Re-connecting to each other is something that is a work in progress, but each day is an opportunity to begin anew and keep practising. Keep having the chats, little and often- it’ll bring you closer. Silence only builds a wall.
  • ask their permission to tell them what you’ve found out (you could throw in how keen you are to make things good between you that you’ve put in the research- brownie points!)
  • explain the issue and the differences in desire (between men and women, or just at different times of the month/related to your mental and physical health- whatever is relevant to you)
  • reiterate over and over that it’s not them (if thats true!) and tell them how much you care about them/are attracted to them and want to make things in the bedroom great between you two. Partners often feel helpless, unattractive and frustrated if they don’t know whats going on.
  • let them know you are doing your best to try and understand yourself and what you need and want, and you’d love for them to help you along the way
  • its ok for you to not know what you want or need, that might take time. Just let them know you’re working on it.
  • encourage them to ask questions
  • answer any questions as openly and honestly as you can
  • Keep doing it… little and often. The more you talk, the better you’ll begin to understand each other and help each other through this.

If you are struggling to know how to start, you could always ask them to read a blog post from this site to start the conversation! Or maybe send them some bits to read.

It’s ok to not have all of the answers (I definitely don’t!) but it’s about being on that journey together and constantly checking in. It’ll come in handy later for when you need your partners help and understanding if you want to practise any of my tips and tricks.

So hopefully that helps little pearls. Hang on in there and be brave- those conversations will feel (slightly) easier the more you have them. And good luck!

Laura

 

 

 

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