July 23, 2012 Ask Dr. Love Advice Column
/*I have been with my bf for over 5yrs , it seems he has never really had a high sex drive but now it's at a complete hault.. He is 31 & I'm 26... I feel that we are still young and our sex life should still be at least decent. We have not had sex since our anniversary which was May 11th 2012. It's not like I haven't tried, I try everyday & he refuses.. I have even went to grab his area and he pushed me away. I've also jumped on him naked and he still denied me. He wont have sex with me but he will still pleasure himself why??? I just don't understand...Am I not good enough for him anymore?? is he borad with me?? is it even me at all???? Please HELP!!!!*/
You said you want a decent sex life. I think you mean that you want an indecent one. That’s the only kind to have!
The fact that you grabbed his crotch and he didn’t jump on the chance to carve another notch in his belt tells me all I need to know!
At first I thought your guy had no sex drive. But when you told me that he’s masturbating, it means he can rise to the occasion.
So what’s going on here?
Two possibilities. First, he’s terrified of intimacyAn intimate relationship is a particularly close interpersonal relationship. It can be defined by these characteristics: enduring behavioral interdependence, repeated interactions, emotional...(Click for full definition.) with another human being and masturbation is a safe alternative. Many people are scared of opening up emotionally or sexually to another person for fear of loving and losing through death, rejection or abandonmentAbandonment is a legal term describing the failure of a non-custodial parent to provide support to his or her children according to the terms approved by a court of law. In common use, abandonment...(Click for full definition.). Or they are afraid of being emotionally swallowed up and taken over by their partner. In the first case, the person has already loved and lost and is scared to suffer the pain again. In the second case, the person was raised by a parent who smothered and controlled him/her. So, to keep space, that person will hold back emotionally or sexually in order to keep one foot out of the relationship at all times.
The second possibility is that your guy is passive-aggressive. This kind of person expresses anger by withholding, delaying, avoiding and so on.
The only way we’re going to be able to bring this issue to a head (if you’ll pardon the pun) is to lay your cards on the table.
What we want is to get him talking about what’s going on. Keep in mind, he’s engaged in what’s called a behavioral enactment. This fancy term means that he is discharging his emotions via behavior. Doing so enables him to release his emotional tension without his having to become aware of his feelings. It’s very possible that he may be either too fragile to face and feel his true feelings. If he’s passive-aggressive he may be unwilling to give up the pleasure he gets by withholding sex from you in order to release his anger. In other words, he could very well be getting off on not getting off with you.
Here’s where your instincts come in. Knowing his history and using your gut feelings, can you tell whether he’s not “sticking it to you” sexually in order to stick it to? Or do you sense that he’s scared?
Use your sense to guide your discussion with him.
If you sense that he’s pissed at you, then you could start by saying that you have the feeling that he’s punishing you by not giving you sex. Then ask him to talk to you about what you’re doing to piss him off. Keep in mind the passive-aggressive will resist communicating anger directly, so he may try to keep his lip zipped along with his fly; keeping his 'you know what' under lock and zipper, to Ziploc his…well you can guess the word that rhymes with Ziploc. My point is, if you persist, you just may luck out and get him to drop his emotional load. When he does, listen and understand him and thank him for sharing!
If you sense that he’s holding back because of fear, then your question will be something like, “I get the feeling that you’re scared of becoming too close to me because (fill in what you know about him. For example, cause your mom smothered you, or your dad died and you’re scared to lose me). You get the idea.
For further help, read my book Till Death Do Us Part (Unless I Kill You First), which will show you how to identify and heal the Old Scars that both of you suffer from. I say you both have Old Scars because you find yourself in a relationship with a man who is starving you for love. This certainly echoes a pattern that you experienced previously.
Please keep me posted. If we get him talking and owning his Old Scars and you do the same, this issue will resolve, meaning you'll soon be putting a dent in that mattress.
"If anger and fighting are ruining your dream of a happy marriage, Dr. Turndorf’s conflict resolution program is for you."
-- John Gray,
Author of NY Times #1 bestseller Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus
"This well-researched book offers a thorough, step-by-step program that provides tools for couples to heal even the most troubled relationships."
-- Dr. John Mack
Pulitzer Prize winning author and Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School
“This book provides a down-to-earth, easy to apply, proven method for creating relationship harmony. This book should be mandatory reading for every couple that wants to head-off or resolve the inevitable relationship conflicts and build lasting love. Buy this book and put it to use!”
-- John Bradshaw,
Author of NY Times #1 bestseller Homecoming
"Dr. Turndorf is an amazing individual who has wonderful advice to offer men and women of all ages and in all types of relationships. Ignore her counsel at your peril!"
-- Bill Hammond III,
Winner of the Best Historical Fiction Award, 2012
"You are awesome Dr. Jamie. You really are. The best part about you is the way you translate complex psychological stuff into easy to understand and actionable insights."
-- Kajay Williams,
Producer Relationship Advice Cafe
"Let me tell you why you're extremely important now. I really believe your message is there. You're spot on. More and more people should be taking advantage of what you're offering."
-- Michael Dresser,
Syndicated Radio Host
"Good stuff. Great insight. I love your approach. Who doesn't need more healing. I love your idea of using your partner as a healing agent. That's such a great way to see your partner. You give great labels and patterns to look for. I love your method. You make it sound so easy. You have a great website with lots of great information and resources. These are the tools we all need."
-- Dr. Matt Townsend,
Host, The Matt Townsend Show