“Why don’t I want sex?” is the question women ask me the most.
It’s always been the most asked question and I’ve been writing about sex and relationships for decades.
“I’m afraid to have sex. What’s wrong with me?’
“I will do everything I can to avoid it – even though I know it ruins my relationship.”
“I see that look in his eyes and I want to run away.”
We know that women lose desire faster in long-term relationships than men. Not because our desire for sex is weaker, but because women need more interesting sex than men to enjoy it.
Our orgasm rate is lower (probably for the same reason) which also reduces motivation.
Women lose desire faster in long-term relationships than men. Not because our desire for sex is weaker, but because women need more interesting sex than men to enjoy it (stock image)
But that’s not the whole story
Research suggests that around 40% of women worldwide experience a decrease in desire. After interviewing hundreds of women for my latest books, I would put that percentage even higher.
There’s another reason women give up on sex that’s rarely mentioned in research or studies: it’s because sex is everything.
I came up with a four step plan to help women reconnect with their sexual selves based on this fact.
And guess what? That works.
What do I mean by “package”? Everything will become clear. Let me guide you.
STEP ONE: BE MORE SPECIFIC ABOUT WHAT YOU DON’T LIKE IN SEX
Women like to make general statements.
“I’m not interested in sex”. End of the story. No further discussion is necessary.
When I ask: ‘But why? Narrow down to me exactly what you dislike about it,” I get a different perspective.
“It’s because I don’t like my body anymore” (Would you be happy having sex in the dark? Or would you feel better about yourself if you received more compliments from your partner?).
“I don’t like being nagged for sex all the time” (Agree on a way to initiate sex that works best for you and talk about how often you are happy to have sex).
“I’m too tired at the end of the day.” (Do it in the morning or during the day on weekends).
“I don’t orgasm during sex” (Join the club: only 20% of women do. There are plenty of other ways to make each other cum).
The fact is that there are solutions to most problems. You just have to be very, very clear about what the problem really is in order to find it.
Action plan: Make a list of all the things you don’t like about sex. Take your time doing this, and keep going until you feel you’ve covered the main things that keep you from enjoying sex with your partner.
Sex expert Tracey Cox (pictured) reveals a four-step plan to help women who aren’t interested in sex
STEP TWO: IS THERE ANY SEX YOU DO OR MIGHT STILL ENJOY?
Or at least you wouldn’t mind, if you had to.
When rushed, women say things like, “Well, I always like to kiss.” Or ‘I used to enjoy having my breasts fondled.’
Other comments: “I love the cuddles and the feeling of closeness that follows.” “I guess it’s a compliment that he wants me.” “It makes me happy to see him so happy.”
When I say to women, “Why don’t you keep having sex that includes the things you like and stop the things you don’t like?” the response is instantaneous and predictable.
‘Do not be dumb! My partner would never consider this. For him, sex is intercourse and if you don’t have that, it’s not real sex.
If only men could grasp this simple concept.
If they didn’t incorporate intercourse into every sex session, more women would be interested in having sex.
Many women enjoy certain elements of sex – X and Y – but not Z. Because they know that Z – intercourse – is always part of the equation, they avoid intercourse altogether.
Intercourse may be the most favorite part of sex for men, but it leaves a lot of women cold.
Worse still, we’re in a weird situation where it’s totally okay to say, “I actually don’t like finger stimulation/oral sex/sex toys very much.” But it’s unthinkable to say, “Actually, I don’t really like sex.”
If every sexual encounter was varied – sometimes it was just kissing, another time breast fondling and maybe hand stimulation, the next time he was pleasuring her using a vibrator or the one of you was giving fellatio to the other, women wouldn’t announce that they don’t like ANY sex.
Action plan: Now make a list of all the things about sex that you have enjoyed and might still enjoy. It’s OK to write things down after the game (I like the hug at the end), it’s all part of the sexual experience.
STEP THREE: DESIGN YOUR PERFECT SEX SESSION
First look at your “What I don’t like” list. Next to each thing you don’t like, try to think of a solution, like the examples I used above.
“It goes from zero to 100 too quickly.” Solution: If he spent more time on foreplay, I would enjoy sex more.
If you’re struggling to flesh out your “What I like” list, consider the following:
It’s never a bad thing to have sex your way
Female-led sex tends to be more foreplay-based, therefore more satisfying for him and her (make no mistake: men love foreplay too, they just need permission to lay down and enjoy and not be in charge).
If couples have sex in his own way, sex happens more often.
If you’re in a weak or sexless relationship and you have a choice – I’m happy to have sex this way or not interested in sex at all – most men will gladly accept the first option.
Try it. You might be surprised at how welcome your suggestions are and how quickly they can reverse what you thought was an irremediable situation.
Are you still masturbating? What do you think about when you do it? If you watch erotica, how about watching it with your partner?
What technique do you use during solo sex? Does your partner know how to perform this technique on you?
If you use a vibrator to climax, have you considered asking him to use it on you?
Do you feel more comfortable having sex in the dark? What time of day do you prefer to have sex?
Where do you feel most comfortable doing it?
Does the music get you in the mood? What type of music ?
Are you happier giving than receiving sex? Many women are very happy to give their partner a BJ or oral sex, but don’t want the favor returned.
Are you fantasizing? What themes are these? Is there anything you can take from them to incorporate into sex (have her tie your arms behind your back, for example).
Are you excited to read a racy book or watch sex in a movie or TV show? Would your partner agree to watch them/read excerpts to you together?
Action plan: After all of this information gathering, you should have a clear idea of what you want least, what you want most, and some ideas of what kind of sex would be best for you.
Now all you have to do is…
STEP FOUR: EXPLAIN EVERYTHING TO YOUR PARTNER
Don’t worry if this is the most strenuous task of the whole exercise: it is for most people.
But the nice thing about talking about sex with your partner for the first time is that once you get over that initial awkwardness, it becomes easier very quickly. And easier. To the point that you wonder why it took you so long to do it.
Believe me, if you avoid sex and don’t have it regularly, chances are your partner will be happy to have a chat. Especially one with a positive slant and lots of suggestions and solutions.
Wait until you get along, then say, “I’ve been thinking about our sex life and we don’t do it as often as we used to.” And I thought/read an article that encouraged me to really think about sex and the things I like and the things I don’t like so much. I found it very interesting and I want to share it with you. Would you be up for that? I’m also keen to know your favorite parts of sex and the things you can take and leave.
It’s a good conversation starter. It may take you a few tries to get to the point where the two of you are chatting comfortably, but the benefits of doing so far outweigh any discomfort.
Together, you can then create a few sexual scenarios that both of you will enjoy. Sex that is not just X plus Y equals Z.
Try to come up with at least four or five rough plans of how a session might go. You don’t have to follow them religiously, just have an idea of what you are aiming for. Some will favor one of you over the other, but relationships are all about compromise.
You can find more information on how to talk to your partner about sex at traceycox.com.
Tracey’s weekly podcast, SexTok with Tracey and Kelsey, also frequently covers topics on the subject. Find it at sextokpod.com.