Intimacy in marriage is a vital cog in the smooth running of a relationship. When sex and intimacy leave a marriage, your mind can’t help but go to the darkest place and worry that your partner no longer finds you attractive or is having an affair.
This begs the question, can a sexless marriage survive?
While sex is not the most defining factor in relationship happiness, sex and intimacy missing in your marriage can lead to serious relationship issues like anger, infidelity, communication breakdown, lack of self-esteem, and isolation – all of which can ultimately lead to irreparable damage to the relationship, ending indivorce.
Read this article to find out why couples stop having sex and understand the sexual dynamics of relationships better.
Why do couples stop having sex? Top 15 reasons
The following are some common reasons why intimacy goes missing from a marriage.
Take an honest look at your relationship and see if any of these ring true. They just may help you to understand key reasons for intimacy missing in your marriage and get back on track tobring intimacy back into your marriage.
1. Immense stress
Women, in particular, find it hard to believe that stress could impact a man’s sexual desire and can lead to a lack of intimacy in marriage.
If you are looking for a way to fix the intimacy missing in your marriage, you must slay the biggest culprit in a sexless marriage – stress.
This is because we’ve spent our lives being told that men are always in the mood for sex, and this is simply not true. Stress at work or home can leave men and women exhausted, making sleep or some other way to relax more appealing than sex.
Studies have found a link between stress anddecreased sex drive. Talk to your partner about what’s causing them stress, and do what you can to help take some of the burdens off their shoulders.
2. Low self-esteem
Self-esteem and body image issues don’t only affect women. No one is exempt from feeling down about themselves. It is a potential reason behind a lack of intimacy in marriage or marriage intimacy issues.
Low self-esteem can take a toll on a person’s relationships, particularly when it comes to physical intimacy, because it leads to inhibitions and, ultimately, to a sexless relationship.
If intimacy is missing in your marriage, cultivate the habit of complimenting and appreciating your partner.
Compliment your spouse and let them know that you find them attractive. You can help make them more comfortable by leaving the lights dim and staying under the covers.
Is your wife not interested in sex? Is the lack of intimacy in marriage from your husband eating away at your peace of mind? Be patient and do your part to resolve intimacy issues and help them feel loved and desired.
Marriage and no intimacy can be unintentionally intertwined via partners’ attitudes toward each other. Have you rejected your partner’s advances in the past? Perhaps you have been less than enthused when they tried to show you affection in or out of the bedroom.
These things can put your partner off of intimacy, leading to a lack of intimacy in marriage.
No one wants to feel as though their partner sees sex with them as a chore, and this is what can happen if you constantly put off sex or never initiate it.
Living in a sexless marriage can make the partners feel unwanted, unattractive, and completely demotivated. Marriage becomes drudgery, and as a result, either one of the partners starts experiencing frustration and loses the motivation to devote energy to other important areas of life too.
If you are looking for tips on how to survive a sexless marriage or to overcome a lack of marital intimacy in marriage, it would be most helpful to consult a certifiedsex therapist who deals with intimacy problems.
Your partner may be feeling resentful lately, and has been contributing to a lack of intimacy in marriage.
Unresolvedissues in your relationship can make them pull away and withdraw affectionately and emotionally. If there aren’t any glaring issues that you can think of, then consider whether or not your partner feels unappreciated or let down by the way you treat them.
The only way to get to the bottom of this is to talk openly about the relationship and try to resolve any issues that may strain intimacy.
5. Lack of non-physical intimacy
A lack of intimacy in marriage isn’t just about a lack of sex. No intimacy in marriage from husband or wife in terms of emotional support can lead to serious issues.
Your sex life can suffer if there’s alack of emotional intimacy too. Feeling disconnected from your partner can make it hard to connect during sex or enjoy it. This isn’t only limited to women either; men crave emotional intimacy from their spouses too.
Spending quality time together can helpbuild emotional intimacy and ultimately bring back physical intimacy. It is important for couples to understand why sex is important and how couples can use intimacy and sex as glue to maintain their love bond.
6. Become platonic partners over time
One of the reasons to explain why couples stop having sex or face a lack of intimacy in marriage is by taking a look at their day-to-day dynamics, as they may have turned platonic over time.
A married couple can get caught up in the day-to-day struggle of life, where they end up overlooking the sexual aspect of their relationship. They become versions of roommates or best friends who are leading their lives together.
We often overlook what lack of intimacy does to a woman or man whose partner is subjected to exhaustion.
No intimacy in relationships can be the result of physical or mental exhaustion that the couple might be facing. It can make one or both partners lack the motivation to have sex.
Wondering when couples stop having sex? Or when people face no intimacy in marriage from wife or husband? It’s possible when they stop trying new things in the bedroom.
Sex can become boring if you don’t constantly try things that can make it more fun, exciting, and engaging.
In the absence of new ways to enjoy sex with your partner, marital sex can become boring for some. This study explains.
9. Lack of hygiene
When intimacy stops in a relationship, you can try to assess whether there has been a difference in hygiene maintenance by either you or your partner.
When two people are together for a long time, they may start taking things for granted, and that may include maintaining good hygiene. And therefore, bad hygiene can become the reason for their partner to lose interest in them sexually.
To understand this better, watch this video about the link between personal hygiene and mental health:
10. Form of payback or punishment
You may have to start worrying about the effects of lack of intimacy in a relationship if one or both partners end up withholding sex as a form of punishment for bad behavior by their partner.
Some can use lack of sex to punish their partner over time, over disagreements, fights, or opposing opinions.
11. Health issues
One of the important reasons not to have sex can be based on health issues that impede one’s sexual abilities and desires.Hormonal imbalance and erectile dysfunction are some such reasons that can affect one’s ability to have sex.
Not having sex in relationships can also be attributed to age-related factors. One’s hormones and physicality may face certain limits as one gets older, and this can impact their sexual relations with their partner.
13. Mismatched libidos
Mismatched libidos refer to differences in sexual desire between partners. When one partner has a significantly higher or lower sex drive than the other, it can lead to frustration, communication challenges, resentment, and potential strain on the relationship. Open communication and compromise are essential for addressing this issue.
14. Life transitions
Life transitions, such as moving, job changes, or financial difficulties, can disrupt a couple’s sex life. These transitions often bring increased stress, reduced time for intimacy, and emotional strain.
Couples need to adapt together, prioritize communication, and seek professional help, if necessary, to maintain a healthy sexual relationship during times of change.
Trauma, whether past or recent, can profoundly affect an individual’s ability to engage in a healthy and fulfilling sex life within a relationship. It can lead to emotional scars, trust issues, and triggers that hinder intimacy.
Seeking professional help and approaching the issue with sensitivity are crucial steps in addressing the impact of trauma on a couple’s sexual relationship.
Here are some answers to some important questions related to couples not having sex that can help you understand things better:
Is it normal for couples to stop having sex?
It is normal for couples to go through various phases in their sex lives, some of which may be marked by a lack of or reduced sexual activity between them. However, things can get problematic if the lack of sex lasts for a long period of time without any hope for a better future.
Couples can consider meeting an expert forrelationship counseling to help them sort out any sexual problems between them.
At what age do most couples stop having sex?
There is no set age by which couples stop having sex; however,studies conducted on the sexual frequency of people have concluded that couples usually experience a decline with time.
What happens when a couple stops having sex?
If there is intimacy missing in your marriage, there will be cracks in your relationship, leading to potentially a permanent loss of emotional and verbal connection with your spouse.
Here are the other problems that can explain what happens when couples stop sleeping together:
Partners start withdrawing from each other
The rejected partner feels unloved and insecure
Chances of cheating on a spouse increase manifold
If intimacy issues persist, divorce becomes imminent
To fix a sexless marriage or overcome intimacy missing in your marriage, it is important to understand the causes of intimacy missing in the marriage.
Reigniting the spark in the bedroom
Things are not always what they seem.
Lack of sexual intimacy in marriage can stem from many things. Avoid jumping to conclusions and have a frank discussion with your partner without being accusatory. Don’t let a breakdown in intimacy create a lack of emotional connection, marital conflicts, relationship dissatisfaction, and bitterness in your marriage.
An unhappy marriage is not the best place to hang out with your partner. Learn how to fix and reignite the spark in your relationship, to strengthen the love bond with your significant other before little or no intimacy in marriage leads to marriage breakdown.
Sylvia Smith loves to share insights on how couples can revitalize their love lives in and out of the bedroom. As a writer at Marriage.com, she is a big believer in living consciously and encourages couples to adopt this principle Read more in their lives too. Sylvia believes that every couple can transform their relationship into a happier, healthier one by taking purposeful and wholehearted action.
Want to have a happier, healthier marriage?
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.