I am very in love with my girlfriend of 3 years, but about a years ago her sexual energy plateaued and now I’m lucky if we have sex even once per month. Should I break up with her even though that is my only issue with her? Last time I mentioned her change it resulted in a large fight and her feeling getting upset.

Dear Only-Once-A-Month,

Before you break up with your girlfriend, here are some things to consider. First, it’s totally understandable that mentioning the change in your sex life resulted in a fight. She most likely has a myriad of feelings about the situation. Sex can be a barometer of the overall health of a relationship. But the good news is that with improved communication situations like this can definitely change.

It is a fact that it is often easier to have sex with your partner than it is to talk about sex with him or her. There are so many reasons that a couple’s sex life can change, especially early on in the relationship. Maybe she likes to be approached rather than initiate herself? Maybe she prefers a different time or place? Perhaps there is a difference in your level desire and her level of desire and you might need to be creative about how to negotiate this? Perhaps in the beginning you were spending more time and effort wooing her and she misses that? It could be many, many things.


The two things that I would caution against doing: 1) not talking about the situation and continuing to be unsatisfied and 2) leaving immediately because you feel it’s a deal breaker. Try again to have a conversation about it. Make sure it is a neutral moment – not just after you tried and were rejected. Make sure no neither of you has been drinking or doing any other mind-altering things (though I’ve heard that no one in Greenpoint does anything mind altering aside from attend the occasional yoga class).

Approach it as a “we problem”, rather than a “her problem.” Emphasize the things you like about the relationship and then suggest that this is something you could work on together. You might ask her if there is anything about the relationship she might like to change. The tone here is not that it’s a giant unconquerable problem, but that relationships are a journey and a constant negotiation.

I’m not trained as a couple’s counselor. So please, keep that in mind when reading this. I would suggest that you might want to also talk together with a couple’s counselor about the situation. Often, we think of going to counseling as a sign that there is a really bad problem going on in a relationship. But really, it’s a way of getting some additional help in communicating with one another and some guidance in working out bumps in the road of a relationship.


El Padre AKA Ann Kansfield

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  1. I have to disagree with some of what has been said here. First of all, it’s not a “we” problem—it’s her problem. Whether it’s a choice, a result of depression or a product of hormonal imbalance, that is something that she has to own. The good news is that if the lack of sexual desire is a result of the last two problems—it can be fixed via medication. The bad news is that if it’s a choice, then there’s nothing that’s going to change her mind or fix the problem. That’s when you decide to get the hell out of there, live a sexless life or get your partner to agree to an open relationship.

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