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Low sex drive

  • Low sex drive (written by Yvonne Fulbright, MS.Ed.)

  • Lack of sex drive, poor marital relations (written by Yvonne Fulbright, MS.Ed.)

  • Low sex drive (written by other sexperts)

HTHGS: Low sex drive (written by Yvonne Fulbright, MS.Ed.)

Ask Yvonne,
I've been married since 1988 and have two kids ages 12 and 9. Lately I have been seriously questioning my relationship with my wife. After careful thought I don't think she loves me. Why would I say that? Well since 1991 we have had sex about once per month. Until lately I never thought much of it since most men seem to complain about not getting it enough. Our first few years were quite different and very fulfilling but my job as a junior naval officer took me away for weeks at a time. When I was around I would need to work 60-80 hours a week.

When I rotated to shore duty I started a part-time job to make ends meet and got my masters via night courses. I left the military in 1995 and started my own company. Only in the last few years have I had the time to really ponder my relationship with my wife. We have gone to marriage therapy and have increased our level of communication significantly. Over the last two to three years I can honestly say I've put my wife and
kids first.

Comments from my wife like "You have been a wonderful husband lately, I can't remember being happier" combined with an actual decrease in sex (I stopped pressuring her in any way Jan 1, 2001) really got me thinking.

A few days ago I suggested that since the kids were 12 and 9 that she should consider getting a job next year. Her comment... "What the hell are you good for then...."

I've talked to my brother and his wife, her brother and his wife... with the exception of her brother they all think I should cut my losses and try to get out of the relationship as smoothly as possible. Her brother suggested I get her to see a DR. and consider mood-altering drugs.

I still love her and when we do have sex it is great. I'm a person that can make due with very little in life and find happiness in day-to-day activities.

Question: Is it possible that my wife does love me and having sex 13-16 times a year is all that she needs? Or am I just being used?
On thing to consider, she was very sexually active at a young age (15). She has had 25 to 50 lovers in her life while I have had 8 including her. Any advice would be greatly appreciated, Dave

Dear Dave,
I’m afraid that only your wife can tell you if she still loves you. Whether or not you’re being used can only be answered by you. My thoughts on the information you provided…
a. Your wife may still resent you from those years when she wasn’t a priority, and when you weren’t able to spend a lot of time with her. Perhaps more marriage therapy could help.
b. When you quit asking her to have sex last year, it may have been interpreted on her part as you having a lack of interest in her sexually all together. She may feel that you do not desire her or love her anymore. If you do, then you need to show her this – tell her this. Try to romance her.
c. You may be right – your wife may not need to have sex a lot. Some people get by just fine with little or no sex, or have a very low sex drive. The number of previous partners either or you has had has nothing to do with this. I do find it disheartening, however, that your wife does not seem interested in fulfilling your sexual needs, and this does not need to be done through sexual intercourse alone. Perhaps, in trying to woo her and turn her on, you can suggest other ways that the two of you can satisfy each other.

d. If your wife is displaying signs of depression, then it would be a good idea for her to see a doctor, who may suggest a medication to help her out. If your wife isn’t depressed, then a mood-altering drug would not be appropriate at all.

While you state that the communication between you and your wife hasimproved since marital therapy, it sounds like even more of it is needed. Consider telling your wife everything you just told me. Ask her some of these hard questions. These issues will never be resolved unless the two of you can work through them together.

Yvonne K. Fulbright, MS.Ed.

HTHGS: Lack of sex drive, poor marital relations (written by Yvonne Fulbright, MS.Ed.)

Ask Yvonne,
I saw your credentials in the email Alex Robboy sent me and thought you might be able to offer some advice.

I'm 25, happily married, and have been "suffering" from a total lack of sex drive. It has caused a lot of tension in our marriage and I just don't know what's wrong or what to do. I've been this way for quite a few even ruined our wedding night and honeymoon. I've asked the Dr.'s and they don't seem to offer any helpful suggestions. They tell me it's normal and that "it could be lots of things." But it doesn't matter how busy or not busy I am, tired or not tired...I just never have any interest. I have a syndrome called PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Disease) and recently asked my endocrinologist if the sex drive problem could come from that, but he didn't seem to think so. Again...he told me that it is normal for women. But I don't have kids and seem not to have the other factors that might cause a lack of desire, so I (we) are really having trouble with this. I hope you are able to offer some help for us! . I really love my husband and WANT to fix this for his sake and mine. Julie

Dear Julie,
The fact that you have PCOS could very much be affecting your sex drive. You don’t state whether or not you are obese due to PCOS. In some women who have PCOS, androgens (male hormones) are changed to estrogens (female hormones) by fat cells, thus decreasing one’s sex drive.

Related are other effects of having PCOS: Are you depressed, especially given your problem is one of infertility? Have you had excess hair growth or acne? Do you have a balding problem? Are there any other PCOS effects that may be causing you to feel unattractive, and thus impacting your sex drive? Is your husband caring and understanding about your physical condition? Are you on the right medication? You need to find a caring physician who can properly assess your medication and your mood. Only then can you get to the root of what is causing your lack of sex drive. Best of luck. Yvonne K. Fulbright, MS.Ed.



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The Founder: "Alex" Caroline Robboy, LCSW, QSW, CAS

Ms. Robboy is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Center for Growth Inc and How To Have Good Sex Inc.  Alex practices marriage and family therapy and sex therapy, and also conducts periodic seminars about human sexuality throughout the northeastern United States.

Ms. Robboy graduated from the University of Pennsylvania where she earned a Masters degree in Social Work, a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Human Sexuality Education and a Post-Masters Certificate in Marriage Counseling & Sex Therapy. Through the American Board of Sexology, she is a board certified sexologist and through the American Association of Sex Educators Counselors and Therapists a certified sex therapist.  Additionally, she is a licensed clinical social worker and a member of the American Board of Marriage and Family Therapy.


  Our Philosophy sex is like dancing, it changes every time. It depends on culture, atmosphere and mood. Sometimes it is done alone, with a partner or in a group. It can be fast and hard or slow and soft. Sex is a combination of non-verbal negotiation and verbal cues: a scream, a twitch of the toes, or a flush of the face. There is no one 'right' way to move, only what feels good to all those involved. 
     The purpose of this site is to share information. Thus, if you have any ideas, thoughts or information that you believe others might benefit from, please e-mail your tip to and I  will be sure to include it on either our weekly newsletter or here on the actual website. 

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