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Olajumoke Awosemo: When Sex Walks Away From Your Matrimonial Bedroom

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How exactly does one describe a situation where a whole month or even two has gone by without the hands of a man and his wife even do so much as mistakenly touching each other? How does one deal with and revive a sexless marriage? Are you living in one or do you know anyone who is? The truth of the matter is that this is the reality of a lot of us, even if we refuse to admit it to anyone else.

For the purpose of clarity, sexless marriage in this context only refers to marriage between two people whose sex life or intimacy has plummeted over the years but neither of them are involved in extra marital affairs. The point here is that the lack of intimacy is not as a result of the presence of another woman or man, as the case may be.

I recently stumbled on a survey that suggested that an estimated 15% of marriages become sexless about the second to the third year of its existence. This implies that intimacy between such married couples has reduced to less than10 times per year. Shocking!

During the early phase of a marriage, many couples would barely be able to keep their hands off each other. Unfortunately, this blissful state seems not to last for too long. This appears to be a common struggle among working class couples that try to balance their busy schedule with parenting and intimacy. While no two couple are exactly the same, the most common scenario looks to be that these couples maintain a very strong emotional connection and even remain best friends. They love one another, but they just don’t feel that sexual spark that was felt in the beginning anymore.

Experts have identified two main culprits responsible for a sexual collapse in marriages: neglecting physical intimacy and not accepting each other’s differences.

Women are often more guilty of neglecting physical intimacy- we are natural multi-taskers who have endless ‘to- do-list’ and we find it extremely hard to set aside our worries of the day. It implies that, ‘to be sexual, we must think and feel sexual too’. It is important that we declutter our mental state to allow for a worthwhile sexual experience.

The second issue is that we often view sexless marriage problem as our partner’s issue or perhaps even fault, instead of regarding the problem as that of the couple. We must also remember that we have different needs as two separate genders and while one person is just fine with deep friendship, another will want deep intimacy as well.

It is important to understand that a sexless marriage is a very vulnerable marriage. Asides from the fact that sex promotes the flow of oxytocin, the hormone that promotes the feelings of bonding, sex also makes the marriage fun and strong. Couples in a sexless marriage, no matter how close must feel something missing deep within.

What is the solution then to catch and get hold of sex that threatens to slowly creep out of one’s bedroom? Couples can learn to re-wire their brains and psyche to recreate and experience more emotional and sexual closeness. Practical ways of mending the wall of sexless marriage include: Boosting up physical affection such as holding hands, hugging and touching; Resolving conflicts skilfully, as lingering or unsettled disputes can affect a couples sex life; putting the marriage relationships before career, finances and even young children; spending time with one another.
Conclusively, talking about the sexless state of the marriage and reaching a conclusion to make good effort is a very vital solution.

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Bobby Flowers

Olajumoke Awosemo is an HR Professional, a Personal Shopper and a Self-Developed writer. Her interest in writing focuses mainly on relationships, marriage and related issues but sometimes touches on other current issues. She is a wife, a mother and jointly manages a relationship blog with her husband at www.hookedandthrilled.com/blogger. She also runs her personal shopper business at www.hookedandthrilled.com/shopper"

49 Comments

  1. my own opinion

    November 18, 2015 at 4:36 pm

    God help us those in this problem. This is one major issue a lot of people are facing & I just think it’s so wrong to be married & not been intimate with your spouse. For Pete’s sake, it comes with the package of been married.
    Yes, work, kids and everything else gets in the way but it can be handled & resolved. Omo ignoring your spouse is d beginning of cheating hmm that’s even worse cuz u don’t know what U are bring back to your spouse . Even bible said it so I don’t understand while folks think is very Ok to go for months & not wanna be intimate with their spouse. Abeg if married life tire u, park well & tell me don’t punish me with sex..

  2. Unique

    November 18, 2015 at 4:44 pm

    This article article reminds me of a post i read on BN where a couple had had sex twice in their five year marriage. That say something.

    You have a valid point in the area of joggling carreer with all the other responsibilities as a wife or husband. I think couples should have a yearly plan yearly when they go on vacation or something of sort. Non intimacy can lead to infidelity.

    Couples should should try and make use of the weekend to spend time together all alone at home once a while to rejuvenate their sex life. The kid can be made to visit a trusted siblings or whoever. Discover the spark that wont let your hand off each other and not be monotonous.

    Frigidity and oversensitivity to body part that looks not too good should be dp away with and a correct perspective should be made of the wrong prejudices about sex we have imbibed while growing up.

    Long time no see on BN. I greet all the great Bn’ers Family

    • Tosin

      November 18, 2015 at 6:56 pm

      Greetings! Missed you.

    • Unique

      November 19, 2015 at 4:49 am

      Aww! My heart is palpitating furiously with a measure of an intensely , goody awesome emotions, lolz. Thanks dear. Missed you too.

  3. Sex has walked away

    November 18, 2015 at 5:17 pm

    1. Actually there are men who dont even have erection being with their wives. Let them go out, erection comes from no where. Sexual attraction/appeal has died. This does not mean that the husband doesnt love the wife o or performs his duty as a provider/father/husband…but not just attracted to the wife again sexually.

    2. Since many women cant initiate sex on one hand, and the husband is not even sexually attracted to the lady on the other hand, it results into sex walking away from the bedroom.

    3. Many women stop doing/dressing/behaving/acting in the manner that made the men sexually attracted to them before. You were a hot dresser, you were a teaser, you were an initiator, you could grab smth b4, you could go down, but now you dress anyhow/loosely, you cant initiate nada, you now see some acts as weird…..could make sex run away from your bedroom

    4. Hubby could be doing side chicks, playing local and international match, some sidechicks/prostitutes may be the one making him cry for more from them and he sees you as boring. This is why we tell you to stop forcing men to marry. They need to be up and about town. Probably they can’t eat Vegetable soup everyday for so long.. They need to change the soup.

    Plenty things could be the reason, if you want it, go for it.
    if you want it, do anything you can to get it!

    simples

    • mrs chidukane

      November 18, 2015 at 5:48 pm

      I also cannot eat vegetable soup every day but I eat it and enjoy it and compliment the chef even when it’s not as delicious as the okro soup I ate before I got married. I don’t know why you think only men get bored with the same partner. As long as you made those vows, you should strive to keep them and invest all your energy into keeping your marriage fun and fresh. I know extremely beautiful, well groomed ladies whose husbands cheat on so let’s stop with that excuse. So if because of breastfeeding my boobs are no more standing, my husband should use it as an excuse because he likes females with standing boobs? Mtcheew

    • Fabulicious

      November 18, 2015 at 6:28 pm

      Mrs Chidukane preach Abeg. why is it the woman that has lost her sexiness.My friend is a counsellor and I hear different stories without any names oooo Abeg. I will shed light on some Of them I heard. Men, you turn your wives off with your bushy and smelly armpits,shave your armpit too,Men, try and take your bath at night,don’t just go to bed like that and think your mechanic like smell is sexy.It is not. Sex is more emotional for a woman,For instance try helping your wife to wash plate and watch how it triggers something,Don’t pick up a baseless quarrel and expect her Vjayjay to turn to orange quickly,sorry that place will remain like nzu because she is emotionally unattached thanks to you.Men learn to give cunnilingus,we were not designed to only give blow jobs,get busy as well.Ngwa,I have over shared ooooo……hahahahaha.No man should come for me oooo unless I send for you

    • Sex has walked away

      November 18, 2015 at 10:03 pm

      agreed, but you are the one complaining sex has walked away, the man is not complaining. He can go 5years without touching you, stay on your lane too.

      if you cant eat one soup forever, go out and eat other soups and don’t make it an issue on BN.

      your husband tie u down? if you ate a better soup b4 marriage, why didn’t you die with your ex and marry him since he has a better soup?

      you married him out of your own volition. deal with it!

      you force the men to marry(when they dont want to like aunty bella), now you want to force them to stick their vow. if e pain u pass, u too go out go chop

      ladies be fighting wars they can never win!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 18, 2015 at 10:26 pm

      Mrs Chidukane, your entire first sentence has wounded me with laughter. ?????

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 18, 2015 at 10:38 pm

      … And I probably commented too quickly, should have kept reading until the end of the thread.

      Dear @sex has walked away, where is this accusation of “forcing the husband into a marriage” coming from? Are you the aforesaid husband’s priest, shrink or babalawo??? Otherwise how have you grasped these facts of another commenter’s matrimonial situation, straight out of thin air from your corner of cyber-space?

      And this article appears to be offering counsel to couples on a very general (and genuinely instructive) basis. How did you suddenly make this an issue of women trying to “fight a war they can’t win”? Are we missing something else you’ve gleaned in the subtext that you’ll like to share?? Because you sound more battle-hungry than the females you’ve heaped all of this misplaced wrath upon…

    • Teris

      November 19, 2015 at 7:20 am

      @sex-don-waka-go, it’s like this marriage business de pain u. but, it’s not by force now.

      do u feel you were forced down the aisle? or fear u will be forced to marry when ur folks/society feel “the time is right”? that is so sad that ur options have been so taken away from u.

      if u are as yet unwed, please enh, inform ur intended o that she only has ur attention for a while. i must applaud ur liberal mindedness though for saying make wifey too feel free to chop outside.

      however, i believe the thrust of this article was intended for those who view marriage as an honourable institution which must be thoughtfully prepped for, guarded and worked at to be successful.

    • Feapo

      November 23, 2015 at 3:08 pm

      The problems that this standing boobs issue is causing mowadays.. God deliver a boob centric generation

    • onica monica

      March 22, 2016 at 5:34 pm

      lol @ complimenting the chef

  4. Mama loves her girl!

    November 18, 2015 at 6:45 pm

    Sorry to digress, it’s related but not too related. I DESPISE, HATEE, HATE, HATE when Nigerian men blame lack of intimacy on their wives appearance and dressing. It disgusts me! Have Nigerian men seen themselves?????????? To be sincere I constantly wonder how Nigerian women(some) remain faithful to their husbands, considering the way the men look! 99% of the homes I have been to, the men are way, way, way, bigger than the women! In everything, especially their paunches and beer guts. It’s nasty. Some can even wear their wives bras. Later they would come and be yarning shit. I thought the man is the head of the home? Why can’t he lead his family in working out and keeping fit? I bet you with the way Nigerian women value marriage, there’s no way that their husbands would suggest they work out together when they both have time so as to keep in shape and they would ignore, rara o.

    At least if a woman is out of shape, she can blame it on childbirth and motherhood, even that one the men don’t want to hear as excuse again, but what is their own excuse, Who wants to be floating on their husband when they are on top because of the huge paunch. Abi is it when they are under the beer gut would not allow the important thing see road. What of different styles their weight would not allow plus their sluggishness and quick finish? Please Nigerian men just take your time oo, love and appreciate your wives because they are putting up with a lot because of God, love, society and their children. Abi you think women don’t like packs abi is it abs ni. If a man is fat, his wife is taking care of him well, if a woman is fat, she’s been lazy and non chalant about her appearance. The man and the wife are both at fault when it comes to loss of intimacy. They should work on it together! Nigerian women I tuale for una ooo. There’s no other definition of strong!

    • mrs chidukane

      November 18, 2015 at 7:42 pm

      I love love love your comment. Fabulicious, I love yours too. Reminds me of that picture, if you don’t look like this, don’t expect your girl to look like that. Dirty obese men that have skid marks on their undies and don’t wash under their D properly and come to bed smelling. I really praise God I dated someone like that early on and so looked out for someone NOT like that when I wanted to marry.

    • OD

      November 19, 2015 at 10:05 am

      MAMA LOVES HER GIRL!!! how many times did i call you? Your comment is the best ever this year. God bless you.

  5. Chic

    November 18, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    But how is it possible to be in a “sexless marriage” without extra marital affairs?? At least one of them will be getting it from outside, otherwise they would find a way to revive & rekindle things btw them.

  6. tunmi

    November 18, 2015 at 6:53 pm

    1. How about stating and owning the issue as your rather than lumping all readers into the issue. It is a bit more personal and more relatable.

    2. How did this become an issue for women go deal with? When I started reading, it was men and women living in a sexless marriage. By the next paragraph, the blame is on women for multitasking. Chale!!

  7. Tosin

    November 18, 2015 at 6:54 pm

    I can imagine this happening to me. No solution, really. I guess that’s why it’s good to have bigger things in common so that when you get tired of shagging each other, there are other reasons to hang together. Maybe you can pray. Oh, and don’t marry a passive/lazy person like me, cos there’ll be nobody to obsess over “bringing the spark back” or whatever people obsess over in relationships. We’ll just be chilling, roommating, watching sports, eating. Till the Lord intervenes.

    • Mee

      November 18, 2015 at 8:35 pm

      Loll @ we will just be room mating and chilling!
      You sound like you don’t like stress at all. I don’t blame you jare. I wish life could be this straightforward

  8. Omoté

    November 18, 2015 at 7:13 pm

    Fabulicious & Mrs Chidukane just said it all jare!

  9. Hmm

    November 18, 2015 at 8:09 pm

    Hmm my husband and I were in a similar situation , not sexless but maybe sex twice a month, I got pregnant and doctors adviced we abstain from Sex because I had a condition , then I found out my husband cheated, it’s been a very very difficult situation for me, I can’t bring myself to have sex with him because I keep imagining him with this other woman and I can’t get it out of my head. It’s almost a year now and no sex…. This might just be the end of my marriage… Sigh :((

    • Anony

      November 18, 2015 at 9:42 pm

      Take heart, it won’t be the end. I’m not an expert, but if you trust in God, he’ll give you the strength to forgive your husband and move forward. It won’t be an easy road, but it’s possible. David committed adultery, and even made sure Uriah was killed, but he realized his sins and ran to God, & the good Lord in his mercy forgave him. So, all I’m saying is there’s still hope for a revival in your marriage. Take the matter to God, beg him to give you the strength to forgive your husband. Take baby steps to show your hubby you forgive him and hopefully in the near future your marriage will be healed.

    • nala

      November 19, 2015 at 2:37 am

      Anoy, are you really this ‘stewpid’? She should be the one praying for strength. Has her husband apologized to her? Is he making every and I mean every effort to help her have the strength to forgive him? Has her husband ran to God for forgiveness? Please, stop with the foolishness.

      I don’t know how my husband will be on top another and I’m praying to God to give him a change of heart. People need to get real.

  10. tosin

    November 18, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    nawa ooo. everythink is women ooo . aw to satisfy ur man in bed , how to make your man love and want you more blahblahblah. biko pple need to be talking to our naija husbands o. if we dont complain about your beer parks dont complain about our muffin tops. we go extra miles to impress you pls it would be nice if you drag urself to do dsame. . we chop banana like its about life or death but to lick plate mbanu. msheww. but seriously, with kids and work after a stressful day the last thing i need is sexual healing.

  11. Sabifok

    November 18, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Nice article. Just to add.
    – “During the early phase of a marriage, many couples would barely be able to keep their hands off each other.” Not necessarily. That impression is a creation of the movie industry. Hollywood to be specific. Because in Bollywood, they act like they don’t kiss. And in Nollywood, husbands always slap wives – sex is for suckers.

    But seriously, every marriage is different. Some couples never ever have that “hey-days” period of incessant straffing. And they are actually fine with it. Because some people don’t need to lay pipes every time to share a bond.

    – Men sometimes do neglect coital activity due to fatigue, distraction, stress etc. Imagine driving for hours in traffic, and coming home exhausted, you may not have sex on the brain. If your legs are tired, your third leg also suffers.

    – Sex is great and sweet, but there are other ways to get intimate with your partner without penetrative sex. You could give or receive a body massage, shower together, chop snail or banana (or plantain). Perform a lap dance for his entertainment. Role play short of shooting an action film (no pun intended). You could act like a tenant owing rent, while he plays a landlord who has come to collect the outstanding (no pun intended). You could go to spa together, or have date nights at home eating junk food and watching reruns of “Downton Abbey.” You could dress up in similar outfits and have a man/wife day out at the beach – let Ekaete tend to the kids for a bit.

    • Tincan

      November 18, 2015 at 10:06 pm

      I was just going to drive by without commenting, then you brought Downton Abbey into the matter. Abeg, give me the Downton Abbey and take the husband plus children for one evening! That’s the big O right there

  12. IJay

    November 18, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    My exact thoughts! Someone is definitely not being honest…. Let’s be realistic, a man cannot stay so long without being sexually active.

  13. demash

    November 18, 2015 at 8:56 pm

    Aunty J, this is my current situation. My wife and I had a disagreement a few weeks back and we’ve not been intimate since then and it is now 2 weeks going on 3. Initially, it was a cop-out for me cos i’ve had a low sex drive for a couple months but I now feel things are getting out of hand. I’ve tried to placate my wife but she won’t give me a chance to get even close. Seems I’d have to get extended family involved.

    I absolutely have no desire for an external substitute but I fear for our matrimony. We have a great family and have been blessed but I can’t imagine been in this situation for another month or two – not just the lack of sex but of emotion as well. I’d rather be a single and continue with my obligations to my kids. Just got to know that a friend who went through a divorce did not have sex with his wife a year prior to that. She just lost interest and that sadly was the beginning of the end of the union.

    • Window

      November 19, 2015 at 9:05 am

      Hi Demash.
      I know your situation is not ideal and I understand why you feel this is the beginning of the end. Have you tried to apologise for the initial issue that you guys had? Sometimes, women hold on to stuff like that and can’t understand that you are trying to apologise, or at least make- up, for the initial issue by trying to be intimate. Apologise with actual words.
      After that, try and explain how what she is doing is affecting the marriage and what you think it will lead to. Hopefully, she hasn’t despaired too much that she would not be willing to walk the path back into the marriage. If she has, suggest counselling. But I personally do not think you should involve extended family at this point (or ever sef).
      Hope this helps. All the best

  14. Posh

    November 18, 2015 at 9:00 pm

    I just want to ask a quick question. I’m newly married (5 months now) … I and my husband haven’t been having a lot of sex like I had anticipated since our marriage is still fresh. Sometimes in a week we have no sex, some weeks, we have sex 2 times or once. Is this patten normal? Did any of you experience same when you got married newly? We have no child currently. However my husband is very busy during the weekdays. Which I understand but what about weekends when he is free and we should be bonding? We still do not get to be intimate. When ever I initiate sex, he is either tired or not interested. When he wants sex, he automatically expects me to give it to him which I do. I don’t know if I am overreacting but this lack of constant intimacy annoys me and has has made me grow emotionally distant from my husband. I need advice. Thanks

    • Tincan

      November 18, 2015 at 10:10 pm

      I would start by having a conversation about it – preferably in a stress free environment. So definitely not during the week, perhaps on a weekend away or so…

    • ATL's finest

      November 19, 2015 at 1:28 am

      @ Posh Congrats on your marriage:) However, hold a conversation with him… Honestly for Young couples, they should be hooping & grinding like little rabbit esp bn a young couple. Even as we get older, we need to explore & find a creative way to keep that part of our lives kinky & sexy.

    • Mz Dee

      November 20, 2015 at 2:25 am

      I do not think it’s normal that at this stage things are already drying up. What I would suggest is take matters into your hands. Become the sexual aggressor. Invite him to bath with you and do not take no for an answer, what is good for the goose is good for the gander dear, also while doing all this pray for him so he learns to leave work at work and do home when he is at home. Experiment also

    • Ayo

      March 18, 2016 at 11:58 am

      It’s not Normal At All!! What happened to Friday, Saturday and Sunday?
      Maybe u hubby needs help: [email protected]

  15. *curious*

    November 18, 2015 at 9:02 pm

    if you know Christ, start discussing this issue with him and try your best to stay away from sin.
    I’ll keep your family in prayers.

  16. Ima

    November 18, 2015 at 9:59 pm

    God Almighty…it is well with your children.

  17. Ozzzie

    November 18, 2015 at 10:12 pm

    @posh, you think something is amiss? It might be….pray and let God reveal it to you. Been there .. ..

  18. mywifeisfiiiiiiine

    November 18, 2015 at 11:06 pm

    Stories that touch.

  19. Oloye

    November 19, 2015 at 8:43 am

    Sex will run away if you any of the following happens to you as a woman..:

    1. He’s not always happy with what you wear (He corrects you all the time and never complimented you when you dress without his input)

    2. He advises you on the kinda perf to use cos you dont smell well enough..

    3. He’s happy going out and to parties alone or with his male friends..

    4. You are married and dont have any need to dress, smell, and tush well…

    5. Your ‘lapuna’ is getting too wider (may as a result of your earlier ‘test-drives’) and he has tried something tighter somewhere else..

    6. You keep adding weight everyday and you know he doesnt like it. Yet you refuse to ‘fitfam’ and he goes to the gym alone..

    7. He reads bellanaija and see ladies with great native dresses and you keep to your street tailors cos they are cheaper..

    8. Your ‘lapuna’ or ‘plate’ is not shaved or has funny odors? You are discharging and you didnt clean up and his ‘okokobioko’ gets stained with whitish substance. He will never suck you again!

    9. You wear long gown and jalabia (arabia gown) while at home..

    I could go on and on…But cos your folks are here forming #teamWomenAre AlwaysRight #TeamFeminist #WhyWomenAlwaysThe Cause you think you are okay??? Continue..they will turn you to ilemoshun (single mother) soon..

    • allergic to stupid

      November 19, 2015 at 9:51 am

      the level of stupidity in this your comment is unreal

    • nwanyi na aga aga

      November 19, 2015 at 11:19 am

      hahahahahhahahahaha! You would be alarmed that when you see the poster of this comment, he would be pot bellied, with tyres around his neck. they are the ones that criticize most

  20. Hamdalat

    November 19, 2015 at 11:48 am

    @allergic to stupid, as in ehn, out of this world. Cant even deal.

  21. Pep

    November 19, 2015 at 11:58 am

    Serious level of stupidity o. Oloye’s comments sounds immature. Can.t deal.

  22. Longstory

    November 19, 2015 at 4:05 pm

    So what happens when in the course of sexless marriage the husband comes home with HIV. Thankfully mrs has dodged this major bullet (as a result of the sexless state). how do you revive things ??????

  23. Single Shalewa, Bitter Bintu!

    November 20, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    I’ve been married for about 2yrs6months and we do have sex at least 3 times a week. I’m yet to understand how my vagina hasn’t connected to my anus. Man has a very high sex drive while I’m a bit his opposite. Dude can’t see me dressing up without having a hard-on. I actually dress up in the toilet or guest room when I’m mad at him (the former when i really want to be petty) and that hurts him by the way.
    I can’t wait to have kids, hoping that would slow him down.
    I envy people who have sex once in two weeks – you don’t know what you have.
    One man’s joy is another’s nightmare i guess.

  24. sex iss not food!

    November 20, 2015 at 6:42 pm

    [email protected] single shalewa,mine connected to d anus but it’s in top shape now

  25. FAD

    November 23, 2015 at 5:06 pm

    When u ve a dog as an husband , he can neglect u for years without touching u oo, & in a society where nobody sees anything wrong in a man sleeping around , u are on ur own with ur cross to carry. The bitterness and betrayers in some marriages don’t even give room for sexual intimacy . May God help us all.

  26. A

    March 18, 2016 at 11:31 am

    Single Shalewa Pls STOP complaining! During Courtship Were u guys not having Similar Sex 3 times a week?
    Don’t tell me He Suddenly became a sex hungry Machine Suddenly Cos as a man I know if a man is active during courtship he will surely be active in marriage! Same for a man who is inactive during courtship, he will definitely be Worse in marriage
    My point is if u dint complain then why are u complaining now??
    Have u taken time to discuss this issue with him in ur 2 years of marriage?
    I know from experience that majority of women wish they are in ur shoes right now, Cos my Dear there is nothing as Sweet as getting turned on by ur spouse nakedness it shows the Marriage is very active and the Love is great and makes u guys bond better!!
    But if ur the type that want Sex once a month! DISCUSS it with him ok
    But don’t come back to BN Crying that he no longer finds u attractive ooooo
    I will say Enjoy What U have maybe with little moderation
    It’s Better to have an active Sexual Partner than to have a dead wood for a wife or husband……..Ask ur fellow ladies am sure most will b willing to Swap places with U

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