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4 Tips for When Your Partner Wants More Sex Than You

Learn what to do when your partner wants more sex than you do from sex therapist Dr. Megan Fleming in this Howcast video about the psychology of sex.


Commonly, when couples come into my practice, they complain about having different levels of sexual desire and the challenges that that brings to the relationship. And one of the things I can tell you is that it's often pretty normal that in time one of you is likely to have more interest in sex than the other. But that in a given couple over the course of time, each of you is likely to notice changes in your own level of sexual interest and desire. Where the one who had the most libido at times might be really stressed and under pressure, and it can lessen. And the one who had very little libido may feel particularly energized or maybe started working out and feeling really good in their body and guess what? Their libido can go up. So, the first thing I want you to consider is it's not static and that it doesn't always stay the same. But it's also true that if you generally notice this trend, how do you make room for the fact that when the one partner isn't interested, the other partner with the higher libido still gets their needs met. And there are a lot of ways that that can look. Certainly I can recommend that the higher libido partner masturbates as one way of relieving some of their sexual tension and feeling pleasure in their own body. And another is, as a partner, perhaps you're not open and receptive to a mutual sexual experience because you're sort of tired or exhausted or really not in the mood, but you might be open to giving your partner sexual pleasure from a place that really is out of getting turned on by seeing their arousal. So these are just a few possibilities. And the other thing I would just have you consider is that sometimes what feels like a high libido is also, it can feel to the lower desire partner, it's almost like you're being their sexual pacifier. And in that regard I would just say that if you feel like you're always needing sex, to really think about what you're looking for, and is it ultimately sex or is it a desire to feel the connection or closeness because it may be that you have a higher libido and solely want to have sex. But it also may be that it's the one way you know to feel connected and perhaps there are other ways your partner can give you that feeling or that confidence in their attraction to you and in their desire to be in your relationship that doesn't always translate to a sexual experience.

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