Monday, August 18, 2014
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Tell Me About It: If he just doesn't desire sex

She tried giving him space to come around - but he just doesn´t desire sex. (istock photo)
She tried giving him space to come around - but he just doesn't desire sex. (istock photo)
Question: After three years with my boyfriend, it has become clear we have very different ideas of intimacy. When we first met, there were all the sparks I could hope for, but he quickly cooled to the point of reaching out maybe once every few months, half-heartedly.

I have tried talking about it, being patient, initiating, giving him space to come around - but he just doesn't desire sex. We love each other and have kept the excitement in all ways except that one, but my eye has started to wander, and I fear I might be tempted to cheat; unfortunately, I have an active libido!

He has no insurance, so I've gone to therapy alone, without result, except that I seem to be pestering him more frequently, usually causing arguments. I don't want to leave him, but don't know how much longer I can be patient.

Answer: "Be patient"? For what?

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  • An active libido isn't "unfortunate" - it's part of you.

    Whether his dormant libido is part of him, or you, or is fixable, I can't say. There are steps he could take, though, to explore or explain his lack of interest, which he's apparently not taking. Knock-knock.

    You want to stay, you want regular sex, you want fidelity, you want. Unless he's actually trying to please you, it's time to face up to not getting what you want. Maybe you can be happy without sex (doubtful), but there's rarely happiness where the effort goes only one way.

    Question: My son's birthday was four months ago, and his godmother hasn't yet gotten him a birthday or Christmas gift. The problem is, this is getting in the way of our socializing. Friday I sent them a text suggesting we meet up for dinner. They finally texted back days later (even though these are people who live by their cellphones) to say they were at the movies and missed my message, but let's try next weekend. This has been going on for four months! She's always sorry she missed us and suggests the next weekend.

    It's because they don't have my son's gifts yet. She was "sick" for his birthday party and then admitted later it was because she didn't have a gift. She rescheduled our Christmas gift exchange several times. I finally dropped off her children's gifts.

    Again, she admitted she didn't have any gifts for my son.

    I just got another text asking what my son wanted for his birthday. Really? Just get him a gift card or forget about it. It's getting to be a joke.

    Their kids and my son are good friends. This nonsense is getting in the way of their friendship as well.

    This has nothing to do with finances - I happen to know she splashed out on everyone else. What should I do?

    Answer: Put this thing to rest, please: "Forget gifts! Son just misses your kids." Clear and textably concise.

    Revealing, too, I suspect: If you hold the no-presents-just-presence line, and (ahem) resist the urge to huff about their phone attachments or out-splashings or etc., even in eye-roll form, then I think you'll clear the path to understanding whether this godmother will ever make time for your family. And whether you miss out on much if she won't.


    tellme@washpost.com

    Chat with Carolyn Hax online at noon Fridays at www.washingtonpost.com.

    Carolyn Hax
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