Author Kathy Batesel writes about topics she has experienced, worked with, or researched thoroughly.
Lack of Sex Can Affect Emotional and Mental Health
Rejection hurts. Ask any guy and he'll tell you stories of rejections that cut him to the bone. When a lover withholds sex, it's a particular kind of rejection that can affect a person's self-esteem and thought processes.
People can have many valid reasons for not wanting to have sex, but often this physical act of intimacy can be wielded like a sword. "Do as I wish or I will cut you to your very core!"
In my article about dealing with silent treatments, I used the word "he" to describe an act that can be started by both men and women. Turnabout is fair play—this time I'll be speaking as if women are withholding sex, though it could just as easily be a man.
Is Refusing Sex a Sign of Emotional Abuse?
Many women think of sex as their ultimate power when it comes to relationships. Even a joking comment, "Haha! No bootie for you, patootie!" can make a man's chest clench in anticipated agony!
When she's not joking, and instead uses her sexual availability to manipulate her boyfriend or husband into doing things her way, she's engaging in a form of emotional abuse. This passive-aggressive technique may be overt or covert. She might say she doesn't want to play unless he comes around to what she wants, or she may feign headaches, tiredness, or other ailments to avoid intimacy.
It can be a slippery subject, because many people and women, in particular, have a hard time feeling turned on when their minds are preoccupied with other things, especially topics that make them angry or hurt. Then there's the added fact that valid reasons do exist for avoiding intercourse, such as:
- Some people dislike having intercourse when they're on their menstrual period (or their partner objects for the same reason).
- Certain physical conditions can make penetration painful or even impossible.
- Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can cause a person to avoid intercourse, either during an active outbreak (such as herpes) or until they've confirmed whether or not they have an STD.
- Reasonably benign conditions like yeast infections and hormone fluctuations can create barriers to sex.
- For men who refuse intercourse, erectile dysfunction can cause anxiety they want to avoid.
- This common experience where men feel they're defiling the woman they love.
Most valid reasons for avoiding sex resolve themselves in a few days or can be treated with good medical care. In the meantime, oral sex and manual pleasure can fill the void. When a partner's refusal endures for many days, is a direct response to anger, and/or they refuse to seek medical care even when it's clear that the condition is affecting their relationship, there is a high likelihood that they're intentionally using sex to create pain for their partner.
The following table gives a basic guide for understanding where to draw the line, though every situation is unique and should be weighed carefully.
When Is Withholding Sex Abusive?
She doesn't feel like it because of an argument that just ended.
She rejects sex after an argument that took place a week ago.
She refuses sex because of a medical condition.
She refuses to seek treatment for a condition that prevents sex.
She refuses to offer alternate means of pleasure when she can't have sex.
Emotional Abuse May Be Planned or Unintentional
Even when withholding sex does qualify as an abuse, it isn't always intentional.
Sexual abuse victims, people with attachment disorders, and people who feel powerless may withdraw from intimacy as a means of protecting themselves. Sexual intimacy is still intimacy, after all. Intimacy requires vulnerability, and when a person feels great about herself, she is more likely to be willing to become vulnerable. However, when she's under stress, depressed, or doesn't feel like she has enough influence in her relationship, she may choose to avoid feeling vulnerable even if she isn't intentionally trying to force her partner to a specific response.
Whether she's withholding sex as a conscious way to manipulate her man or as a self-protective measure, the underlying reason is the same: she feels a lack of power and control.
This video illustrates how sexual aversion can restore a feeling of being in control even when a person's experience of having too little control took place many years earlier:
Sex and Control
Humans have an innate need to feel as if they have control in their environments. It helps them feel safer and more secure. When a person's need for control is unreasonable, it can hurt other people, in which case it can be called abusive.
Every form of abuse stems from a need to exert control. In some cases, the abuser has found themselves in a situation where they aren't getting a reasonable amount of influence over the problem, while in others, no amount of influence is enough!
However, abuse rarely happens in a vacuum. There are usually two abusers and two victims when emotional or physical abuse invades a relationship. While it's possible for a healthy person to be abused by their loved one's dysfunctional behavior, most often, both people in a marriage are contributing to the problem.
When a person withholds sex to an abusive degree, their partner may have ignored or denied their viewpoints and requests. They might have learned that their opinions and desires are unimportant to their partner, and even if they don't verbally acknowledge their anger and hurt, their feelings are reflected in the bedroom.
The sex-deficient partner experiences this bedroom behavior as an ongoing rejection, not all that different from the way the withholder may have been feeling for days, months, or years.
Addressing these issues early and sensitively can produce profound changes that increase a couple's intimacy.
Getting Sex Back into the Bedroom
The woman who withholds sex believes she has been treated unfairly and lacks a way to get fair treatment. Even if she's completely wrong, there's no way to reach her and persuade her to change her mind by telling her she's wrong. It just won't work, so don't try it!
In fact, she probably believes she's being nice by not bringing up the things that bother her. She'll minimize her role in creating a problem or worse, blame him, though not to his face unless she is pushed to her breaking point.
To recover a lackluster sex life, the denied partner should follow these steps:
- Recognize her need for recognition and praise, and give both generously where it's deserved. (She does deserve it for plenty of things, because her entire life revolves around pleasing others.)
- When she talks about how she feels or what's bothering her about any subject, listen carefully and make sure you understand where she's coming from, even if you don't agree. Don't argue your point while you're listening. Let her talk herself out.
- After she agrees that you understand her viewpoint, find at least one or two of her points that you can validate as reasonable, good points. Assure her that she's important to you, and let her know that while you don't agree fully, you'd like to find a solution you can both tolerate.
- Use fair fighting techniques whenever you discuss matters you disagree upon.
- Work with her to find win-win solutions.
- If there may be a medical reason for her behavior, offer to set an appointment to get treatment.
There are some specific "don'ts" to keep in mind, too:
- Don't allow yourself to be treated unfairly, either.
- Don't try to read her mind. You can say "When you're ready to talk about why you're no longer attracted to me, I'll be ready to listen, because I don't have the answers that can help us resolve this."
- Don't tolerate what isn't tolerable. Sure, a few days without sex won't kill anyone. But ongoing rejection is bound to affect your self-esteem eventually. It's okay to set a reasonable deadline and consequences, and to honor them, too. "I understand that you don't feel like being intimate with me right now. If you still don't feel like talking or being intimate in the next two weeks, I'm going to get a hotel room for a few days while I decide what to do about the breakdown of our marriage."
- Don't make empty threats. If you set forth a consequence, follow through. Let her be responsible for her own feelings and behaviors, and set an example by being responsible for yours.
- Don't criticize, blame, lose your cool, or attempt to teach her why she's wrong.
Some couples have sexless marriages and have learned ways to cope with the lack of intimacy because they value other benefits of the relationship. Then there are those folks who never find a way to bridge the gaps that come between them. These tips won't solve every problem, but if they're used consistently with a passive-aggressive partner, they can show her that it's safe to be vulnerable and that not having open communication no longer works.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
Questions & Answers
Question: I was told by my boyfriend that he was withholding sex as a form of punishment, because he didn't like my attitude toward him. I argued too much. He said I would have to change and be more submissive in order to have sex. Is this common?
Answer: No, it's not common. And I would have to wonder about anyone who believes that "punishing" the person they love is an appropriate thing to do for ANY reason.
Question: Is avoiding sex a good punishment for my partner?
Answer: Is there such a thing as punishment that is "good?"
Question: My partner has rejected me in every way! He has ED, but will not help me have an orgasm or any other kind of intimacy because he says he does not have the urge. It has been thirteen years! Is there any hope?
Answer: Oh, wow! That goes deeper than someone simply withholding sex, doesn't it? I'm so sorry you're going through this. How hurtful it must be to have been dancing this dance for so many years! So let's start with this: It is not about you at all. It's entirely about him.
My gut instinct says he may have what I call a "Madonna-Whore" complex (I've written about that topic here, too.) Sometimes men simply cannot by physically attracted to a woman that they deeply love. They believe a good woman can't be a freak in the sheets and still be a good woman, essentially. If this is the case, it's doubtful that you'll find any changes heading your way.
Then there are closet gays who feel a need to pass themselves off as straight, for a variety of reasons. I hate to say that, because so many women jump to this kind of conclusion any time a man isn't interested in them for *any* reason, but thirteen years together without sex is a much different issue that warrants this consideration. Some other signs to look for: his computer history could reveal visits to the site that have classified ad sections that allow arrangements to be made for meetups. Alternatively, he may frequently erase his browsing history so you won't see such things. Any gay porn, emails or phone calls to work pals or social friends at unusual hours, or extreme homophobic attitudes around you. Decisions to sleep apart or have separate vacations or activities, or more physically affectionate with other men than he is with you or other females in his life, like sis or mom. There can be tremendous hurt and shame surrounding this topic (for both parties), and it can cause a great deal of damage. Whether there is hope if this is the case would depend on whether you both wanted to make the marriage work, whether you could accept him, whether you can find a way to meet your needs and if he'll accept that, and more.
The third possibility, though I think it's unlikely due to this being more than five or six years, is that he may have a serious testosterone deficiency. This is easily fixed with supplements.
Question: Since women don't see me in a sexual way anymore, would I be better just paying for needs from an escort?
Answer: If you have physical needs that you can't satisfy, I personally would support your decision to hire someone.
Yes, there are a lot of judgmental people out there, but let's be real for a moment. Nobody complains when a woman gets paid to sing, or to clean house, or to model in Vogue magazine, so why should they judge a woman who gets paid to use the skills she has by someone who wants to pay her for those skills?
© 2012 jellygator
jellygator (author) from USA on June 19, 2020:
Sweetheart, don't you deserve better than that?
Hint: You DO!
You ask, "Why do I have to be the bad guy?" The answer is that if you do nothing, you're being the bad guy - to yourself, and a good guy to him. If you were to put a stop to this and leave, you'd be being the good guy to yourself even if he sees you as the bad guy.
You're the only person who will be with you from the day you're born till the day you die. If you can't count on yourself, then there's nobody in the world you'll ever be able to truly count on, so be kind to yourself!
UnboundHawk86 on June 15, 2020:
m13-io...I know exactly what your going through only I'm a female and my story is a little different but none the less this kind of sexual abuse cuts right to the core of who you are and what type of person you have let yourself become. My boyfriend and I have been together now for 5 yrs and I should have seen this coming but love is blind and very hopeful of what great possibilities can come your way given time and healing. Not my case it seems as though instead of being honest with my lover I should have lied to him and taken that lie to my grave just so the relationship can be.....so my honesty has now been turned into disloyalty and it has to do with sex so my forever punishment is to never be sexually satisfied or aroused in any way that I might enjoy. But if i do experience satisfaction in a sexual manner, i am quickly reminded how horrible of a woman I am afterwards. He likes to twist things completely so that you have no idea what the hell just happened and you are completely off guard. All I can do is go to a corner, make myself into a little ball and cry my eyes out always thinking what did i do wrong this time. For some messed up reason I can't bring myself to leave. I used to be such a strong passionate woman and now I'm a repressed little girl fighting off the teasing bully from school. Stick and stones may break my bones but yes words are just as abusive. I've changed who I was to satisfy this man. To be ready for him when he needs to get sucked or f**ked. To have everything else ready as well: dinner, laundry, errands, cleaning, and whatever I have planned for myself better not interfere with his chill time. As of lately he now tells me he has no space or time for himself that's because I had to become submissive and available whenever he's home so no duh! He's going to feel that way because My leash is firmly around his grip but he doesn't loosen up. It's impossible. He is becoming impossible. We both have businesses to run and I just got mine in gear and regardless of having to deal with him and how he treats me sometimes I think I have done a great job with what little support i get from him. He made sure that I couldn't get along with my family and so I just gave up on the idea of reuniting with my own. I see what the abuse has done and where it's getting me but I can't leave...i think i want to find more answers but truth be told there's nothing more to be searched for within this relationship. He made sure of that...we do not speak of our past, we do not watch, listen to anything that triggers a negative response. I'm supposed to read his mind by anticipating his wants and needs. But what about me? I don't argue with him, I stopped doing the normal bitchy things us women do...i stopped that. I feel so lonely, so unwanted, uninteresting, ugly (I'm a beautiful hispanic woman but he knows that and makes sure I don't flaunt it). I wear no makeup, i don't dress up anymore because he turns it into me trying to arouse attention from others. I feel like a trophy that is only brought out on special occasions and I'm not allowed to be my own person. How am i to run my business? I don't even smile anymore. I started taking meds just so i don't feel this pain or rejection, sadness, loneliness, worthless, the list goes on. He's even told me " I'm not your knight in shiny armor, I'm an asshole and I can trust you only as far as I can throw you".....what did I get myself into. It's so hard to get out. He wants me to be the bad guy so that he can be on his high horse when things go further south. He can only be happy with me for the most 4 days in a row after that it's arguing and fighting. I stand my ground and say what has to be said but that just makes everything worse. I just wish I'd turn into a cloud so I can fly far far away and never feel anything bad again.
Your wife is a hypochondriac. Every medical personnel goes through this because of the extensive knowledge. But she has twisted it into her own advantage. Don't feel bad about leaving a person who is disabled especially if they aren't willing to help themselves. I left my husband because he didn't want to treat his epilepsy. He just wanted a caretaker and live off of me. I left that marriage because i wasn't about to let him take me down.
I guess you get to a point where it's so exhausting to fight back. It gets harder to live each day wondering if we are going to get along or not. I only see myself trying and banging up my head about it...not him. He doesn't take his own great advice. He doesn't practice what he preaches. He blames it all on me. I'm his problem but he doesn't leave. So all I have to comfort me is my stuffed animal. What the hell happened to my life?
Why can't i pick myself up again? Why doesn't he just go away? Why do I have to be the bad guy? Will i ever know what love is supposed to be.....i seriously doubt it.
Wrangler1973 on March 19, 2020:
I have been denied sex for 14 years I can’t imagine a worse pain .
jellygator (author) from USA on August 13, 2019:
Hi m13-io, I'm so sad for you right now! I think it's important to remember that if you don't treat yourself well, others will learn that you'll accept being treated poorly. You only owe as much loyalty and respect to others that they offer you.
This doesn't mean you should make yourself a dishonest or morally corrupt person. It means that making yourself "less" for someone else is never going to make them "more" than they are.
The only person who can TRULY answer what you should do is you. Only you know your deeply held values, and your deeply held desires and goals. In fact, you are the ONLY person in your life who will ALWAYS have the ability to take one step each day toward reaching those desires and goals. If you cannot reach your dreams while you are in this relationship, then you probably should leave it behind because life is too short and it's only a few more years before you realize you're getting ever closer to the end of life issues we all face eventually. On the other hand, if you can find a way to stay together and reach those goals, you might opt for a different choice. Some men have affairs, for example, and aren't troubled by the morality of it because it feels reasonable to them for their situation.
Whatever you decide is right for your life, there are ways to achieve it without causing greater harm to yourself, and I pray you will find that path. Best wishes!
m13-io on July 21, 2019:
hi, we've been married since 2012 but we've been together since 2011. It was a whirlwind engagement straight to the aisle.
During the later months of the engagement the bedroom started to cool down to maybe once a month and even that was seen as an inconvenience.
We had sex 1 time during our honeymoon which shocked the crap out of me. What had I gotten myself into? Once back, the moment she could gain access to my benefit plan, she quit her job. I make a very good income so I gave into her wishes even got excited about the possibility of making her happy being able to provide for her such that she didn't have to work. It made me feel pride to know that I was providing well.
She was very convincing about it and made a series of promises to me, she got very sexual for a couple of weeks once I gave in then the bedroom went into deep freeze mode again.
There are mitigating factors that must be taken into consideration to be fair. In 2014, my partner was diagnosed with a disease an extensive surgery had to be done. After months of anticipation, we found out that this surgery was a failure. To further the medical issues, she has migraines that occur with weather changes almost daily. She also got diagnosed with autoimmune conditions that have me literally FORBIDDEN to touch her anywhere such that a pillow wall goes up every to withhold even snuggling with her.
God forbid I touch her in her sleep!!! "Pervert" and "creepy" are terms she's used.
I love this woman, how can she treat me this way if she feels the same way? When I express wanting to have sex or even bring intimacy up in anyway I am chastised with "that's all you think about!!!!" "You are only concerned with your dick!!" "Your selfishness knows no bounds!" "You don't consider how sick I am!"
For years I've felt completely emasculated, myself esteem is through the floor and frankly I feel like a broken and dejected shell of a man. I am told repeatedly that I "need to be the man of this house!". That I am not the man she married. That she married a confident and secure man but now I am lair and a pervert.
I am by no means an ugly guy. Not to brag but I have been overtly hit-on by dozens of women over the past couple of years. I've remained faithful to my commitment to her but OMG I would do anything to find a safe, comfortable, intimate and energized partner to please.
I might also mention that I am VERY insecure about my penis size. I am a grower not a shower and I am not very tall. It's about 6 1/2 inches when fully erect but now that I am gaining weight I've seen it begin to "turtle" in which is so embarrassing. I never had kids by choice but now I am thinking what would happen if it stopped working altogether? I will be completely destitute sexually at that point.
I push all of these issues out of my mind but I am absolutely infuriated by this. When I have brought it up to her in the past couple of years, she says "It's her not me." She says she isn't happy with her body and has zero sexual desire. She is on several medications too that effect her libido.
I set an appoint for a couples counselor to try and have this conversation in a mediated way because I feel if I really let her know how this effects me it would be beyond hurtful. I find myself constantly muttering about how I hate my life, that my life is ruined, that none of the material gains I have matter, that she duped me into being a complete sucker. I've wanted to kill myself, doubted my sanity and just witnessed the feeling of any sort of manhood or pride disappear completely.
With her being disabled and not working I provide for almost everything. The guilt that I feel when I think of leaving kills me. How can I walk away from someone I so love deeply who is sick? I worry and feel extraordinarily guilty for even considering it as an option? If I were to leave it would be my second divorce and her 3rd.
I'm in my 40's with no kids. I make a moderate six figure income and have very little personal debt besides the house and car payments. I ask myself every morning is today going to be the day I cut bait and run or do I slug through all pissed off for another 24 hours.
I went from Husband to caretaker in a matter of minutes from her failed back surgery. I soldier through though the best way I know how by self-stimulation and porn when I get the urge, but both of which she high disapproves of. She is very threatened that I will leave or that I even look at porn. At one point, she searched my browsing history extensively and made it a point to call me a deviant and a pervert to my face. I have to masturbate to porn in secret in my own house. I feel trapped on every side when it comes to any sort of sexual gratification.
I would give up all the porn in the world to have a normal healthy sexual relationship. Something that is reciprocal, energized, pleasurable and gratifying but I don't think I will ever get to have this with her and it breaks my heart. Honestly, I am a dirty dog I will do anything to get her off but the gates are closed and locked tight. Anything, mutual masturbation from across the fucking room would make me feel more loved and appreciated.
I am seeing now how sick I am becoming mentally and emotionally by this absolute denial and manipulation. I say manipulation because on several occasions, I have walked out the door only to come back to a series of empty promises and let down after let down after let down.
There is the constant double checking she does, saying I love you then waiting till I say it back. I do love her. There is no-one I've found that I click personally with better but sexually and emotionally this relationship is the only thing getting fucked here.
I can't tell you how much it hurts and effects me to now go year after year being turned down over and over again. She wonders why I am so angry and resentful towards her. I am so passive-aggressive towards her now it makes me ill.
This is a total power-control issue to it's core. She has suffered more than you can imagine in life physically, mentally and emotionally. My heart goes out to her and I want to take care of her but can't she see the needs and pain I am in? I don't think she even considers how her actions affect me just as much as mine affect her.
I find myself just wanting to walk away from everything. I bought her the house she wanted, the car she wanted, paid off her credit cards, student loans and almost always bring home dinner, presents, groceries, medications, offer to take her on dates, just everything I can for her yet all I get in actuality feels like a grandstanding IOU due to x condition or y circumstance she has ready.
There is also her constant self-scanning for anything medically wrong with her. For years she worked as a nurse but I think all that education just puts some sort of health anxiety in hyper-drive for her. Everyday there is some new medical condition that she may think she has. I have become just numb to it at this point she insists that I am the insensitive bastard.
She is 100% disabled due to the failed surgery in 2014, but not immobile. When there is something she wants to really do suddenly she can muster the energy and health to do what she really wants. I feel angry and cheated by this.
I have always had a very amorous and sexually gratifying relationships in the past. Not necessarily promiscuous as I tend to adhere to monogamy but I always had enough to satisfy. The fact is I dumped the absolute best & most compatible partner I've ever had to be with my spouse. This leaves a daily feeling of dread, regret, anger and depression that makes me very passive aggressive as the years have gone by.
There isn't a day that goes by that I don't kick myself for walking out on what I knew was everything I wanted. Why did I ever go this direction? I ask myself that everyday now.
I stay away from her as much as I can anymore. It hurts to much knowing that in every way any sort of physical intimacy will be repelled.
Given all this what should I do? What would you do?
jellygator (author) from USA on December 28, 2018:
Hi Marcel, I'm sorry you're suffering through this! You're right that this probably has nothing to do with her hysterectomy, but everything to do with her job. If you haven't heard of Madonna-whore syndrome, you might want to read up on it. I suspect that you're enduring the male equivalent of that because of your wife's job. I have an article here about it or you can look it up.
Marcel Brabson on December 22, 2018:
My wife and I have been together for 21 years. We're supposed to be separated but we still live in the same house. Sleep in the same bed. She says that she loves me. She kisses me. Showers with me. Wants me to rub her butt at night. Or scratch around her crotch area. These things give pleasure to her but she won't do anything in return. She blames it on her hysterectomy but she works as an escort and has sex with strangers. But I can't touch her. She says with me she has to have boundaries. But they're no boundaries with strangers. I feel like a fool. And it's taking its toll on me emotionally. I want to leave but I still love her. But I can't tolerate the prostitution. I can't stand the mind fuck games that she plays with me about sex. If she even thinks that I'm talking to someone else she gets upset. Please help me
jellygator (author) from USA on October 04, 2017:
I'm so sorry you're going through this! This probably has nothing at all to do with you, but it's easy to feel like you must be doing something wrong. It sounds like he is going through something himself. Maybe he feels like he won't be able to perform. Maybe he feels guilty about something. Are you able to help him feel safe about talking to you? If he thinks you'll get hurt or angry, he probably won't open up to discuss it, but if he feels like you'll accept and support him, you might be able to get to the heart of the problem.
MsJoseph on September 08, 2017:
jellygator (author) from USA on December 17, 2016:
I bet you do! I hope you found something here that can help change that for you.
jellygator (author) from USA on December 17, 2016:
Welllll, I'd say that no two contracts are alike when it comes to marriage, but in general this is true.
jellygator (author) from USA on December 17, 2016:
Hi Samantha, your situation a lot like your husband is showing signs of Madonna-Whore syndrome. I have an article on here about it that you may find helpful.
jellygator (author) from USA on December 17, 2016:
I'm sorry, Erika!
If your husband isn't providing you with the validation that you're beautiful and sexy, then please find a way to remind yourself! Obviously, cheating is not a great answer and can cause too many problems, but having spa days or exercise groups and appreciating that other men find you attractive can all help.
I have another article about Madonna-Whore syndrome. If your relationship is good in other ways, you may find that article helpful, too.
Green on November 20, 2016:
My wife is withholding sex now and I hate it
Erika on October 31, 2016:
So sorry to hear you are going through the same thing. unfortunately for me, it didn't get better.. I've been dealing with this for the past 4 years.. only when he is really in " need" he seeks me out.
I have told him I want a divorce. I told him, it's "my" time now. I have always loved the outdoors, travel, wine, and have always been a free spirit. I have given myself the permission to reach out and explore and just move forward and take this as a life lesson.. not going to be bitter about it,but be even better in my present and future, this will be second divorce for him as well. He has been begging me now to reconsider. But, I've been giving him chances these 4 years and you know what?
I am absolutely done. I love my husband but his control and abusive behavior will no longer be tolerated by me.
This is just odd for me because when we hear about someone witholdin affection /sex we tend to think women..but, it happens to us as well.. we are more quiet about it because, if a woman dare wants more sex than the man, she is usually criticized by being called a slut or other offensive words. It's been good sharing my experience, it's helped me put things in perspective. I feel that a relationship is to give yourself to the other person and basically trust them with your life..unfortunately, at times we can end up with someone so oblivious to what a real loving relationship should be and only begins to care when the other Is done. I hope your relationship mends samantha. Wish you the best.
gbo on October 29, 2016:
At the end of the day sex is part of the marriage contract. Unless there is a medical issue and you are playing games with that then do not be surprised when your spouse is sleeping with someone else. Life is hard work. Even the fun things.
Samantha on October 29, 2016:
Hi my situation is the same as Erica's. My husband stopped having and wanting sex as soon as we got married. I've confronted him about it and suggested that he's either gay or was molested. Either way it's selfish and at some point I told him will be the cause of a divorce if he doesn't get real with me and fix it. You're a grown man figure your crap out and stop letting your issue hurt your loved ones. If I leave him this will be his second divorce by age 34! I've tried everything and nothing is working or has worked. My next step is to leave him and hope the reality check wakes him up...or not
Erika on October 11, 2016:
My husband knew from the beginning of us dating, sex was very important to me. Sex was a way of connection that I wanted on a daily basis. I have 3 children , he has three children. We both work..we both have busy lives but, we could make time for us. We have communication problems but most stem fron lack of sex. Why? Because I'm tired of feeling rejected. I'm a attractive female, never had a problem with sex in the past. My exes never had to worry about me witholdin from them to have them do what I wanted them to do.. I never disrespected anyone like that and never used sex as a way to get what I wanted. This has broken my self esteem to the ground. Why I couldn't cheat on my husband even if I wanted to. I have lost my sex appeal mentally. Because sex appeal is not just what you show physically but mostry mental, I feel so unattractive even though men constantly give me compliments and such. When I speak to my husband about the pain I feel over what he's doing.. it almost seems as though it gives him more of a "high" to reject me for even longer. I've haven't been with him for over 3 months and I'm dying inside.
Trax on September 16, 2016:
Hi, it is my Alpha male partner who withhold sex from me..ok, I would love someone to help me on this
happyman on August 17, 2016:
I'm really surprised that the author has replied to the comments written to this article. Rarely seen with other websites. Great job.
MarkNap128 on July 03, 2016:
I've had a few LTRs and the one thing that never left was the sex except of course, for my last. Of course there exists medical issues that could cause a loss of intimacy in a relationship/marriage, but do I need scientific data to backup a claim that if this were the case, the partner would understand? Besides, as stated, there are other ways to pleasure or give affection to your partner. Man, I myself used an SSRI a couple of years ago and it totally wiped my drive. I went from a hound to a sexless zombie yet I still took care of my woman and when i was all set and it upset her i explained what was going on and how it had nothing to do with her. Because I loved and cared for her i wanted to make her feel good. Well it was a few times before the last six months of our almost 5 years together where she would withold after giving. I shrugged it off until it because obvious it was a control issue. Mind you, this girl had serious issues wirh emotional and verbal abuse as she suffered through it as a child (at least when she was honest shed admit to this) so it was always a struggle to prove that I wasn't A. Cheating and B. Loved her more than anything ever and was willing to be patient and put the extra effort in to make her feel appreciated. But as in most cases with these insecure control freaks, when they see you trying harder to appease to their demands, they realize their control tactics are workinf and the withholding only gets worse. If you feel sex is a reward for your man or if you feel he should know what's going on in that crazy mind of yours without solid communication, you're only destroying what uou once had. Sex isn't about getting off, it's about joining as one, it's a gift indeed, and to starve someone emotionally is just as brutal as doing so with basic living necessities. End the relationship, and find a healthy woman (or a man if you're the woman receiving this form of abuse), and move on. It's usually when you pull the plug they start offering intimacy which is usually too late as they have lost your trust and what value you had left. Make excuses all day long, but its said women have affairs when there's a void, well deprive a man of intimacy to control and you have no right to whine when he's given in to another woman's advances. You hung yourself in this scenario. Learn from it, and realize your vagna isn't golden, because there most likely is a woman out there who would appreciate you and value the love and empathy you could have towards her
anonymus on June 30, 2016:
Very well written . Sadly even I am experiencing the same situation. Dont know what to do
jellygator (author) from USA on June 19, 2015:
You raise an interesting point!
dashingscorpio from Chicago on May 27, 2015:
Very well written. Voted up and useful!
However one has to wonder if the wives of Brad Pitt and George Clooney rejected them would it be a power play? Women want to take their place!
Either guy could walk out their front door and there would be millions of women around the globe who would gladly jump into bed with them. :)
It makes you wonder if male "sex symbols" or celebrities have to deal with the same bedroom issues as the average married man.
jellygator (author) from USA on January 08, 2015:
I don't see anything blocked, but I'm not the person who uploaded the video so I probably have very minimal access! :(
Anastasia Kingsley from Croatia, Europe on January 07, 2015:
Most likely under You Tube settings when you linked the video to your Hub. I would first Edit your Hub, remove the video, re-check settings and ensure that there is no blocked access, then upload it again for overseas Hubbers / Guests.
jellygator (author) from USA on January 06, 2015:
Hi and thanks! How do we adjust the settings on that?
Anastasia Kingsley from Croatia, Europe on January 05, 2015:
Hi Kathy, great topic. Couldn't get the video to work in Croatia - could you adjust the settings? Happy Hubbing... Anastasia
jellygator (author) from USA on December 08, 2014:
Thank you. I hope your username soon becomes "thelovedone!"
therejectedone on December 06, 2014:
Thank you for this article. The video was dead on.
jellygator (author) from USA on May 20, 2014:
Well, Roby, I appreciate that you are direct with your opinion, but I respectfully have to disagree. The first half of this article says that women have a tendency to withhold sex more, and that it is a form of emotional abuse. The fact that I advise the victim on steps to take does not mean that it's blaming the victim.
When I write to a woman that the next time her partner treats her poorly, she should remind herself that she is CHOOSING to participate, it doesn't mean that she caused her partner's bad behavior, but it does mean she has some power in the situation. The same is true of men who stay in relationships where a woman is withholding sex.
If you are a man experiencing a lackluster sex life, denying that you have ANY role in the situation will NEVER work for you. Sorry, but that's a fact.
roby61 on May 19, 2014:
This article continues in the vain of many other articles. When the woman hurts the man, doesn't understand him, makes him lose his self worth and manipulates him, it's all because the man is doing something wrong. He should be more concerned about her needs, her emotions, her vulnerability - and then, BINGO! everything gets better - but not for him. It's a hypocritical mantra that is truly passive in it's aggressiveness. Men are to blame for their own problems. Hmphh!
jellygator (author) from USA on June 22, 2012:
Thank you! I agree, it can be hard for people to talk about this one, especially when their spouse isn't helpful!
shalini sharan from Delhi on June 22, 2012:
a great hub
many people shy away from trhe topic. bringing it up was a wise decision
jellygator (author) from USA on June 22, 2012:
Thank you, Dr. Pooja!
Dr Pooja on June 22, 2012:
A very thoughtful hub on a topic people may feel shy to discuss .Voted up.
jellygator (author) from USA on June 22, 2012:
I knew you said elsewhere you're happy with it. That's why I hope you stay that way. :)
Jessee R from Gurgaon, India on June 22, 2012:
haha... my relationship works just fine my friend...
thank you for your kind concern :)
jellygator (author) from USA on June 22, 2012:
Rahul, my friend, I hope you don't find yourself needing to!
Jessee R from Gurgaon, India on June 21, 2012:
A very useful hub.... dealing with such kind of rejection can be tough...
People can make their own conclusions but the ultimate solution for me is to handle thing patiently