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January 19, 2019

Our sex life is dead

Hi Valentine,

I have been married since 2002 and we have three children. My issue is that we have never had a good sex life. Initially I thought it was pregnancy and weight gain that was in the way but I really worked to lose weight and remain sexy and nothing doing. I have bought lingerie, cut my hair and I dress well. I make him his favourite meals and I try not to stress him but this man is not interested. In all the time we have been together we have had sex less than 30 times and since my last born was born in 2010, this man has not touched me. He hides in the toilet when I try to get intimate. It is embarrassing and I don’t know who to talk to. I feel I have failed as a woman. What can I do? What is wrong with him?



How awful Njoki. I can feel your pain even from your short email. A dead marital bed can have you feeling all manner of things – angry, unattractive, rejected, resentful, stuck and even vengeful, just to name a few. It can also have a negative effect on your self-esteem and confidence levels. I imagine that the communication within your marriage has also suffered as you feel that your husband is withholding something from you and he might feel that you are hounding him for sex.

Five years of imposed celibacy can feel like a lifetime and I must wonder what your husband imagines that you have been doing to have your needs met. You did not mention it so perhaps you aren’t interested, but has he considered that you might be unfaithful? It is ridiculously unfair for him to deny you sex and expect you to be faithful to him, no?

As for what you can do, it sounds like you have exhausted your personal wisdom so I suggest that you go for counseling. The Amani centre offers free counselling services so you might start there. Your pastor might also be a good place to look. You could also get your husband to see a urologist while you are at it, just to make sure that his equipment still works. I complete aversion to sex is highly unusual and just as you are uncomfortable about it, I would think that your husband is also stressed out. Five years of celibacy while you are sleeping next to someone you are attracted to is no joke.

It is great that you are still committed to working on your marriage and keeping your family together. Take heart Njoki, the truth will come out. Not to scare you, but have you considered that he might be gay? Please ask him while you are in counselling? He might be terrified to admit this even to himself, after all Kenya is not particularly accepting of gays, but ask him. Good luck Njoki and I hope I have been more helpful than scary.

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