Couples With Vastly Different Sex Drives Explain How They Cope

Back view of a couple sitting on a park bench and feeling distant
Charlie Foster/Unsplash

Even the most passionate couples can hit a snag in their relationship when it comes to bedroom activities.

Sometimes it's just bad timing. A person in the coupling could have had an exhausting day at work or they may not be in "the mood" for some action. It could be nothing.

But when couples are perpetually experiencing this slump, it could be an indication of a deeper problem.

So how do those with opposing sex drives deal with the situation?


Redditor red_darrow99 sought answers from strangers online and asked:

"People with sex drives way higher than their partners…How do you handle it?"

Like with many issues in a relationship, it all starts with being communicative to resolve them.

Let's Talk

"I have a relatively high sex drive, but my new partner has a lot more than I do, so for the first time I've had to say sorry, not feeling it, I felt like I failed her."

"But I communicated it to her and she understood and I think that's as healthy as it gets."

– Elijah_Wouldnt

Identifying The Conflict ​

"We talk about it and don’t play games about it. Neither one of us are embarrassed. I (f) have the higher drive than he does and he is very physically affectionate and lovey but there’s no mixed signals. I admit when we were first together, rejection didn’t feel great but I find that really talking with him openly and looking at this from an 'us vs the problem' instead of a 'me vs him' problem is something we are strong with."

":It’s easy to feel like it’s you versus your partner, especially with a bit of a bruised ego (which is fair to have). I learned to enjoy the cuddling and touching and kissing but really pay attention to the signs he gives. There are some things he will only do if he seems like there could be a chance for him to get into the mood."

– pwrflwor

​Full Transparency

"Absolutely this. It's all about transparency, but I think you need to have this level of transparency very early on in the relationship, otherwise these kind of future problems can be very difficult to navigate. Talk to your partner. Be open and honest early on in any relationship."

– Digitek50

Some Redditors found a solution.

Relieving The Tension

"I’ve read that some people use sex to ease tensions in their life (me). Other people need to have tensions eased BEFORE having sex (my wife). So what I have been doing is easing those tensions for my wife before initiating such as cleaning, laundry, dishes, bills, etc. It eases her mind and makes it easier for her to get in the mood. Also, its good for our relationship anyway. That’s my advice. No guarantee that it will work, but it helps in my case!"

– nimrod823

There's Always The Consolation Prize

"You take matters into your own hands."

– sm12511

Reading Erotica

"If she likes to read tell her to start reading smutty novels. Holy f'king sh*t."

"My wife and I have been together 20+ years. Super high sex drives for first 15 years for both of us, basically until kids."

"Then her drive just dipped pretty low. Then she started reading these books and sometimes I can't even keep up."

"I read one of them and it's ridiculous. I don't get it, story sucked, writing sucked, but it definitely put me in the mood. And her too."

"She doesn't like to watch porn and life as a mom / worker / wife is just stressful. Reading is relaxing. Reading puts her in the mood while relaxing. Win win."

– bNoaht

Understanding His Perspective

"I never try to force my boyfriend or beg him to have sex. We just chill, and he initiates if he is actually in the mood cause lord knows I am always ready LOL. Otherwise, I take care of myself."

"It definitely hasn't been easy. I am like a once everyday kind of person minimum. My boyfriend is a once every couple of months, maybe. If he's really stressed out at work it can be a while. I felt very rejected at first and unattractive. But I had to understand it from his perspective. To him, it's not important and when you're stressed unimportant things go on the back burner. For me, it's a stress reliever so the more stressed I am the more I want it. Just like when someone people are depressed they eat, but when other people are depressed they'll starve themselves. Everyone is different."

– BysshePls

People continued sharing their experiences.

Check The Testosterone Level

"My wife has had the same issue. She wants to be more intimate, but it doesn’t come naturally, and I’m very sensitive to her feelings. One thing to check is her testosterone level. Women actually need a healthy testosterone level for procreation, and it can be suppressed by a number of reasons. For us, it was breastfeeding."

– brentnic

It's Not Personal...Sometimes

"It's frustrating and disheartening. I have to work really hard not to take it personally or as a sign that he's not attracted to me. I don't initiate at all anymore because the rejection really hurts."

– placentacasserole

Long Drought

"The beginning of our relationship was filled daily with it. 7 years later and we go 10+months between each time. I'm not handling it I'm slowly breaking.."

– CyberMech96

Marriage Might Not Be The Right Answer

"I have a high sex drive, I am very affectionate, and I create opportunities for intimacy. My fiancé is now the exact opposite, coming up on a year of communicating my needs and feelings with no feedback other than 'just not interested or not feeling it' then she goes back to her phone (little world). It’s clearly depression. A year of pecks on the cheek for kisses, and that’s it."

"I’ve asked, pleaded, and begged for her to call a Dr. To seek some help. But it’s just been excuse after excuse."

"I do love her. I wouldn’t have asked her to marry me. I can’t force her to seek help when she doesn’t feel there’s an issue."

"I can feel resentment growing as I debate whether I’d be happier just with a dog in my life. At least then I’d have another being wanting to go for a walk with me and spend time with me."

– ohp250

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Have those hard conversations and find solutions or make compromises together.

That's if the relationship is important to you.

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