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Menopause and hot flashes have taken my sex life away. My wife is 54 and started menopause at For the past eight years it has been like I am married to my sister. My wife has no desire for sex and will not take hormones because they could cause cancer.

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These are some typical complaints I hear as a certified sex and relationship therapist. Often what lies beneath these complaints is a raw sense of fear, sadness, and hopelessness.

The reasons for low libido you may not have considered

The truth is that, most likely, many things are contributing to your wife avoiding intimacy with you. The question is, what can you do about it? Who knows, a more fulfilling sex-life might be right around the low. Most women these days are juggling a variety of different, and sometimes conflicting, roles and responsibilities in their daily lives. Motherhood, managing a home, career demands, community and religious service, and her relationship with you! Tending to all of these commitments leaves her with little time to relax long enough to allow her sexual desire to grow to a level of conscious awareness, let alone pass the threshold into wanting to do wife about it.

At the end of the day sex can feel real yet another thing she has to do instead of something she wants. They screech sexual desire to a halt with too many responsibilities and too much stress on her plate. Be her partner in managing and taking care of the household and the. Ask her specifically what you can do. Research shows that women take on most of the domestic work. Cook dinner. Do the laundry. Drive the kids to their activities. Ask her about the things that stop her from feeling desire and arousal brakes and the things sex help her feel relaxed and show accelerators.

Remember: Sex is about want and connection, and sexual pleasure is not easily experienced when a woman is under a lot of stress.

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If you want better sex and more of it, help lower her stress levels. Her standard of hygiene might be different than yours. Do you know what things turn her off? Turn her on? Visual cues, such as seeing an attractive, well-dressed partner with confidence and class can be a huge accelerator for women. Women also generally respond to romantic cues and intimate behaviors such as dancing, watching a sunset, and massage. These behaviors may help her to feel connected with you and accelerate her desire and arousal. Some women report feeling more attracted to their husbands just seeing them going to the gym—even if he has extra pounds on him.

His effort and determination to better himself is attractive to her. Are you taking care of yourself physically? Are you being your best self and living in a way that you can take pride in yourself?

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Get to the Gym. Make an effort to smell good. Dress nicely, and take pride in how you present yourself. Work on being a better person and let her know what goals you are working on.

My husband refuses to address his low libido

Get your own therapy. She will be amazed and proud that you are committed to working on yourself. Her negative reaction to weight gain—and your perceived reaction—is a massive turn off for her. When a woman feels confident and healthy—both emotionally and physically—she will be much more in the mood for intimacy.

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There is strong societal pressure to be a certain size and look a certain way. Women contend with much stricter standards than men do in this area, and this leaves her vulnerable and feeling like she is not enough. The media has unforgiving standards about not only what a woman should look like but also what it means to be sexy. Oftentimes, she gives up even trying.

For some women, staying at home a large part of the day and not having hobbies or outside interests facilitates lower self-esteem and overall lower self-confidence. When women allow themselves to start feeling pleasure and confidence in other areas of their lives, it is easier for them to start feeling like they deserve and want sexual pleasure in their lives as well. Offer to take care of the kids and other responsibilities so she can have some time to herself. Encourage her to develop her talents and interests.

Fewer sex partners means a happier marriage

Pamper her a little bit. Avoid saying things that could be hurtful. Many women report feeling turned on when they feel desired by their partner and are approached in a way that makes them feel special. A woman is vulnerable physically and emotionally when she is sexual with a man. Remember, the brain is the most powerful sexual organ, and for most women, sexuality is tied to their relationship.

Don’t be afraid to get help

If she is feeling disrespected, uncared for, or negative emotions in general from you, it will be very difficult for her to relax enough to experience desire. Do a self-inventory.

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When is the last time you took her on a date? Are you treating her with respect and appreciation in your daily interactions? Apologize for poor behavior in the past. Talk with her about what you have realized you need to do better. Be willing to do couples counseling. Ask her gently how you could meet more of her emotional needs. Listen to what she says, and do it!

Steps to take if your low sex drive is impacting your relationship

Her low desire might have very little to do with you. Women are about twice as likely to experience depression as men. The same neurotransmitters that control mood also are involved in stimulating blood flow to the genitals. If neurotransmitters are not in the proper s, then there is less chance of arousal.

Wife frustrated by husband’s low sex drive

Chronic illness and pain makes it hard for her to even think about being sexual. Ask her questions about her health and whether or not she feels it effects her sexuality. Know what is going on with her physically and be sensitive to it. Encourage her to see a doctor, endocrinologist, or therapist.

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Be supportive. Talk with her about ways you can be sexual as a couple that are not painful. Find out what kind of touch is pleasurable to her. One in five girls is a victim of child sexual abuse. This can leave lasting scars as well as unhealthy beliefs about sex. So many survivors of sexual abuse do not get the support or therapeutic help that they need to heal from the trauma.

Many women adopt powerful cultural messages that sex is shameful and bad. Acting sexual out of wife and obligation instead of desire and connection can continue to cause damage to her already conflicted sense of sexuality. Talk to low real the cultural messages you internalized related to sex and ask her about hers. Adopt a strong position of consent with how you behave with her.

She still has a right to choose want to be sexual and when not to. Find ways to show her without any sex undertones.

Affection confusion in marriage

Give her a hug. Hold her hand. Put your arm around her. Most of all, be sensitive to how she responds to this touch, and act accordingly. Pain is often something women experience during sexual intercourse but for various reasons feel embarrassed or scared to talk about with their partner.

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The problem is, when the brain connects sexual experience with pain, a learned negative response is created and reinforced. Automatic aversion is often the result. A certified sex therapist can be very helpful in providing psychoeducation and solutions to help eliminate pain. Women generally need a lot more time for foreplay and time for her brain and body to become adequately aroused than men do. Erotic and enjoyable foreplay helps with lubrication and managing pain as well as allowing more time for arousal to reach the tipping point into orgasm.

Talk to her about her experience. Ask her if she ever experiences any pain. Ask her what types of foreplay she enjoys. Be brave and ask her what other things she might like.

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