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January 20, 2019

Love Matters: I want sex twice a week - he says no

Hi Rowan,

My first marriage fell apart when our sex life died. So, when I met my second husband, we made a pact to make love at least twice a week. But eight years in and a fortnight sometimes passes with no sex. My spouse thinks it’s fine, but I fear things will unfold like before. What can I do?


There is nothing wrong with setting the bar high in your love life but, if that’s the case, you should be prepared to fall short every now and then.

Targets that seem reasonable in the first year of marriage become less realistic over time as other cares take precedence.

And while it’s good to be an unabashed romantic, you shouldn’t let that overshadow any hint of pragmatism. The wise lover has to recognise that all relationships evolve and that very few (if any) couples honestly feel the same urgency for sex after 20 years together as they did after 20 weeks.

The crazy cocktail that makes people fall madly in lust starts to fade, say biologists, after only a few years. Then, urges that were once involuntary may require some extra effort.

You say you fear history will repeat itself, but if you’ve chosen a man who’s palpably interested in intimacy, that seems unlikely.

Perhaps after a certain amount of time, it’s better to have good sex once a fortnight, rather than dutiful coupling just because it’s part of a schedule. Spontaneity is important.

It’s also dangerous to view your husband’s commitment to you solely through the prism of how often he wants sex, rather than how connected he feels to you generally.

You certainly don’t need to worry about a fortnight’s break — I would only fret if you were counting the gaps in months.

Ultimately, remember that if you make excessive emotional and physical demands on a relationship, you risk smothering the love that’s there.

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