Couples Advice: When your partner doesn’t want to have sex

Not wanting to have sex is like not being hungry at the same time as your partner. It’s a natural, biological occurrence. Our sex drives may vary person-to-person, and can be influenced by external factors like stress or lifestyle choices.

However, if you’ve ever experienced a partner turn away from your touch, or put sex off again and again, it can feel not so great. It’s easy to slink into personal rejection but remember that, without actually talking to your partner, it’s unfair to jump to the conclusion that it’s about you.

Let’s go through some ways to positively address and move through your partner’s feelings about sex. As always, the foundation to a great sex life involves open and honest communication.

Respect their decision

In order for your partner to feel safe and considered, first and foremost, you must respect their decision to not have sex. This is likely a boundary your partner is putting up, and that’s okay. Boundaries ebb and flow over time. It’s important they don’t feel pressured to do something that doesn’t feel comfortable for them.

Talk about it

Healthy confrontation goes something like this: asking your partner if they’d like to talk because you’ve noticed that your sex life has dipped a little bit and you’d like to make sure you understand it. It sounds easy but often broaching difficult topics like this one can feel awkward.

Try to be objective and not accusatory; you’re trying to understand something you’ve not experienced before. Is this an intimacy issue? Do you need to rebuild intimacy between each other? Are there lifestyle factors that need to be discussed like stress or diet? Perhaps this comes down to different sex drives: one person could be ramping up, while the other is slowing down.

Be empathetic, actively listen, and try to take yourself out of it if it doesn't have to do with you as a partner, even if this does come down to sexual compatibility. There’s no blame, some things change and some people have different needs.

Discuss different sexual positions or try something new

If your partner’s wary about sex because it seems like you’re in a rut or doing more of the same, suggest trying out something new. Have you ever talked about fantasies, kinks, or fetishes? Now is the time to be open with each other to come to a resolution. Read up on the latest sex tips or positions to try. Spice up your sex with lube for couples if you haven’t tried it before. Consider K-Y® Lubricant - Naturals* and a new sex position you haven’t tried before. What about foreplay or sex toys? Slowing it down? What if you focused on each other’s erogenous zones?

There are an abundance of flavours in the sexual world, which is really amazing. Talk to each other openly and safely about what you’d like to try or experiment with and see if that’s what’s missing.

*Ensure this product is right for you. Always read and follow the product label.