7 Sure Signs You're Headed for a Sexless Marriage

Adriana Velez | Dec 17, 2014 Love & Sex
7 Sure Signs You're Headed for a Sexless Marriage

empty bedsNo couple starts out hoping they'll wind up in a sexless marriage. And yet, possibly up to 20 percent of couples have sex 10 or fewer times a year. How does that happen?!? I know, they have children. But seriously -- there are some very clear signs that you are headed toward a sexless marriage. Pay attention, and you could avoid this sad fate.

Are any of these signs happening in your marriage? How do you feel about that?


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  • Too Much Focus on the Kids -- Not Enough Focus on You


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    This should sound familiar to a lot of us! "Children are a joy and motherhood is wonderful," says sexy lifestyle expert Dana B. Myers. "But we moms plummet on our priority list the moment we have kids." You have less time for self care, and that turns into throwing on the same comfy-but-frumpy outfit every day. "When you give up on feeling sexy and confident, it has a direct effect on your sex drive," Myers adds.

  • You're Parenting Too Much


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    We're living in an age of hyper-parenting, where we feel like we have to be ON and PERFECT as parents all of the time. This crowds out time to relate to your spouse as a companion -- and a lover. "When you don't allow yourselves the time to be alone together as adults, having grown-up conversation and grown-up fun, you're short-changing yourselves," Myers says. "You're literally strangling your romantic connection."

  • You're Too Angry to Kiss Him ... Ever


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    "If you let your anger and resentments get in the way of your physical intimacy," says sex and relationships coach Rebekah Beneteau, "that's not only a sign you're headed toward a sex less marriage -- it's a sign you're headed toward divorce." She cites relationships research from the Gottman Institute. Beware of those long-simmering feelings of contempt.

  • You've Stopped Going to Bed at the Same Time


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    For most couples, showing up in bed at the same time enables the sex. "When one of you is deliberately staying up later and not coming to bed at the same time, it's time to start looking at why," says Beneteau.

  • You Say 'No' More Often Than You Say 'Yes'


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    The reverse is also a sign (getting turned down more often than your advances are accepted). Even if you're not saying it aloud, your body language can say it loud and clear. "You can go from sex-once-a-week to no-sex-in-a-month very quickly if you keep listening to that voice inside your head that says 'no,'" warns Myers. "Eventually he will stop trying. All of a sudden you're in a sexless marriage and wondering where the connection went."

    Beneteau agrees. "Men report that when they keep making offers and are getting rejected, they stop offering," she says. "They think you don't want them anymore and they're not good enough. They start to withdraw and look elsewhere to have their needs met."

  • There's a Loss of Attraction


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    This could go either way. Maybe you're no longer attracted to him, or you feel he's not attracted to you. This could be for any number of reasons, but you need to deal with it, as painful as it might be.

  • You Libido Has Disappeared


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    "There are periods in a woman's life when her libido is going to wane," says Beneteau. This could be because of pregnancy or because you're post-menopausal. Whatever the reason, you need to "own" that and be responsible for getting your mojo back. This is not a problem that will just fix itself. "The longer you go without sex, the harder it is to get started again," Beneteau warns, "so don't ignore that. Get curious about it."

  • Reclaim Your Bedroom


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    You've noticed some of the signs. Now what? Do you just give up? NO WAY. "None of these signs is a death knell," Beneteau says. "They're red flags you can be curious about -- look at the underlying causes."

    "We forget how good lovemaking can feel, and how much we enjoy connecting," Myers says.

    "Sex is a way we create connection," Beneteau says. "It's a way we reach out to our partner and make sure they still feel loved and desirable." And that's important, because "a sexless marriage can easily become a marriage on the rocks." Here are some steps for reclaiming your sex lives.

  • Solution: Invest in Yourself Again


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    Feeling too frumpy for sex? Myers recommends taking just a few minutes a day to care for yourself so you look and feel good, which will boost your feminine confidence. It's not selfish or vain! "You'll feel prettier, even flirtier, your hubby takes notice, it becomes a very positive cycle of self-care and confidence ... and boom, your desire starts to percolate again."

  • Solution: Disconnect From the Kids


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    Even if it means putting the kids to bed an hour earlier, deliberately carve out one-on-one time with your spouse. Even better? Get out of the house, says Myers, and out of your usual routine. "Have a mental list of non-kid-related topics to talk about," she recommends. "You'll rekindle your grown-up conversational skills and remember you actually like each other."

  • Solution: Be Curious


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    Beneteau says there are ways to ask about your spouse's lack of interest in the bedroom without judgment. Rather than asking, "What's wrong with you, why don't you want me anymore?" try, "I've noticed you haven't been feeling having sex lately. Do you have any idea why?" Or, "Is there anything I can do to make it more fun?"

    If you've noticed he's getting his "needs" met with the computer or porn, don't accuse. Ask, "I noticed you haven't been feeling very sexual, what's going on?" And here's the most surprising thing Beneteau says: "Confronting what's going on can lead to deeper intimacy. It's definitely the crisis that can lead to more fun, because it's about more honest communication between the two of you." Whoa. Let that sink in a little.

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