In most relationships, sexual appetite varies. If preferences, desires and needs do not match, it can put a lot of strain on the partnership – but there are solutions. Darling + Sweetheart knows advice.


    • Common Reasons for Different Sexual Desire
    • Little or no sex – what can we do?
    • Is there a solution for different needs?

“Not today, honey!” – Three words that are more common in relationships than you think. Especially if, after the initial phase of falling in love, everyday life returns or different stressors play a role. Let’s get one thing out of the way: it’s natural to have different sexual needs. This also includes having a desire for closeness and intimacy with varying degrees of frequency. First the evaluation or the carousel of thoughts associated with it (Did I do something wrong? Does he/she no longer love me? Am I not attractive enough?) makes sexual reluctance or different desires a problem. Most of the time, it seems like an almost insurmountable hurdle for most couples – we experience this again and again in conversations with our clients. But how do you deal with it when both in a relationship have different amounts of desire over the long term?

Common Reasons for Different Sexual Desire

Different sexual desires are quite normal at first. The discussion of sexual needs alone can become a pleasure killer. Often, however, a difference in sexual appetite is also accompanied by deeper emotional conflicts in the relationship. In systemic couples therapy, therefore, we do not only look at the pleasure itself, but also at what is wrong in the interpersonal area.

What many couples don’t consider, however, is that they should first check physical or health factors that can weaken libido, such as:

  • Chronic fatigue
  • Stress/Burn-Out
  • Medication
  • Problems with the thyroid gland
  • Testosterone deficiency
  • Hormonal contraceptives
  • Menopause (Altered testosterone and estrogen levels)
  • Pregnancy and breastfeeding
  • Physical pain/illness

Clarify whether your low or decreased libido is not due to health reasons. Especially when it comes to pain or psychological problems, there is no room for desire. And that’s okay for now. Seek medical advice.

“Sometimes the problem isn’t the libido, it’s the lack of communication.”

In our culture, sex is still fraught with shame or characterized by unrealistic images. Many people have a fixed mindset of what sex should be like and how often it should happen. But as in many relationship matters,
respectful and appreciative communication is the key
. Your counterpart doesn’t know what you like or what’s going on inside you until you say so. And: If you feel valued by your partner, you can also communicate your wishes, needs and fantasies more openly. In this way, you get closer to yourself, but also to your partner.

5 concrete tips: Little or no sex – here's what you can do:

1. No reproaches, please!
If you don’t feel like it, you often put pressure on yourself or perhaps feel that you are not enough for your partner. The other part may struggle with rejection. Accusations could only cause more stress and distance here. Better: Ask for permission to bring up the topic. Approach the matter as a team and communicate in a quiet moment – preferably outside the bedroom. Emphasize what is going well and carefully express initial wishes. Accept if your partner doesn’t want to talk about it the way you do at first, so that the topic doesn’t become a source of conflict.

2. Let your actions speak for themselves
Would you like to be closer to each other? Create a cosy atmosphere at home yourself and offer your loved one, for example, a nice full-body massage. Sometimes it also takes an appointment that it stays with the massage and is no longer expected. The mind needs time to engage with physicality every now and then. In general, loving interaction promotes trust and willingness.

3. Hug each other!
Especially in long-term relationships, it is common for couples to lose sight of each other. There are no more intimate kisses, you only see each other between door and hinge, discuss organizational matters, are a good team and physical closeness is even more out of the question. But how can they be restored?

Our practical tip: Hug each other daily for 30 seconds. Be aware of this embrace. This physical contact triggers messenger substances and can actually make you want more again.

4. Break out of habits
No time, too much stress and ingrained behaviors – even in bed. All of this has an effect on lovemaking. What can help then: Create new spaces for yourself! When was the last time you dressed up and went out as a couple? Even small everyday adventures such as an overnight stay in a hotel in your own city or secretly bathing naked after work can be very refreshing for the relationship.

5. Strengthen
In a partnership, there are many other things in common that are at least as important as good sex. Focus on things that are going well and strengthen them – this can also help to improve the situation. Once you’re in a good mood, it can quickly turn into more.

Is there a solution for different needs?

In the course of a partnership, the sex life develops or changes. In the different phases of life, for example during menopause, during/after an illness or after childbirth, the respective needs must be reconciled again and again. Open and honest communication also includes conversations about sex. The prerequisite for this is, of course, that both people are open to change and willing to take on the topic.

If you can no longer find each other physically, if the ideas and suggestions of both of you or one of you are not accepted at all, then we ask ourselves or you the question: What is really behind the reluctance? What injuries, irritations and unspoken couple problems need to be solved so that you want to get closer again physically?

We at Liebling + Schatz are happy to accompany you in experiencing your sexual relationship in a new way. Based on our years of practical experience, we know that it is even possible to experience a whole new form of intimacy. If you would like our support, contact us!

Would you like to learn more about couples therapy with us? Then feel free to take a look here.

Photo Credit: Unsplash/WeVibe

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