I’ve been seeing this guy for almost half a year now. Our relationship is not very deep, I’d say it’s casual: we meet up every now and again, have dinner and sometimes I stay at his place. He says compliments to me and thinks that I am attractive, but he hardly ever wants to have sex. I don’t know what to think, it never happened to me before. His usual excuse is that he’s exhausted after work, but I hear the same thing even during the weekends. Do you think there might be other reasons rather than his tiredness? Why won’t he have sex with me?
Thank you so much for your question. It is an issue that often stays unheard because it takes so much courage to speak about it. But it is very common! It is actually just as common for men to have a lack of sexual desire, as it is for women. I will offer a few thoughts that can help you to understand what might be causing this low sexual desire in him.
Reasons for low libido in men can be physiological and psychological, and as the body and the mind are so strongly connected, it is a mix of both in many cases.
One cause can be low testosterone. Symptoms – other than low sex drive – that indicate a lack of testosterone are: erectile dysfunction, depression, sleep disturbances, persistent fatigue, mood changes, and difficulties to achieve orgasm. Low testosterone can be counteracted by reducing stress, exercising regularly, sleeping sufficiently, and avoiding alcohol and medication. A very powerful practice that I advise my male clients to incorporate into their daily practice in order to increase their testosterone levels is testicle massage. A few minutes a day can increase sexual desire and even heal erectile dysfunction.
Other medical issues that can cause low sex drive are obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes.
When looking at psychological issues, it is very important to see the societal pressure that men feel around their sexuality. There seems to be this masculine norm that suggests that a man should want to have sex all day every day. It is as though there was this common agreement that men’s sexuality is somewhat simple and effortless and that it is simply supposed to work. End of the story. But humans are highly complex beings and none of us was born into a world where sex is spoken about freely and where a healthy sex life is a fundamental part of education.
So, let’s say this man was my client. After excluding medical and hormonal issues, I would try to figure out what the psychological issues are by asking questions like:
“Is he suffering from pressure to perform a certain way? Does sex invoke emotions in him that is difficult for him to experience? Is there a fear of intimacy? Is there a negative association with the experience of pleasure? Does he feel shame or guilt around his sexuality?” All of these are very sensitive issues and once they are uncovered, a lot of compassion, love, and patience is required in order to facilitate deep healing.
The last thing that I would like to say to you is that it’s essential to remember that this is his issue. Growing up as women, we have learned to seek validation in our sexual partners. The moment a partner doesn’t want to have sex with us, we might decide that this means we are not desirable. And then this might result in us disconnecting from our own bodies and killing our own sex drive.
So what I invite you to do, is celebrate your own sexuality. Indulge in your sensuality. Create a regular self-pleasure ritual. Really tap into the power that your sexuality withholds. Throughout your day, ask yourself again and again “What’s the most loving thing I can do for myself right now?” The more we tap into our own pleasure, self-love, and personal power, the more we find wholeness within ourselves. And being irresistible to men and attracting amazing sexual partners becomes nothing more than a favorable side effect.