By Dr. Ruth Westheimer, King Features Syndicate
12:27 PM PST, January 17, 2012
Q: What, if anything, can be done about different levels of sexual interest? My wife and I both enjoy sex together, but I am interested in it happening about three times a week, and she seems to be fine with once a month. Granted, she doesn't have an orgasm every time we have sex, as sometimes it has been about a month, and I tend to reach climax at the initiation of her climax and then it all falls apart. I understand that this is frustrating for her.
I think if we had sex more often, then this would be less likely to occur. She says that it's frustrating to be responsible for my sexual desires. What's frustrating to me is that this seems to reflect sex as a chore or burden — nothing I want to be involved with.
I love my wife, and I think of making love as a means of communicating this because it is an intimate experience that I share only with her. I really could use some female insight. I've thought about not sharing my interest in sex with her and just satisfying myself on a routine basis so I wouldn't have an interest and thus not be a burden. I know, I know, seek counseling. I would still like to hear your feedback.
A: You don't need counseling yet — you need to know about how to please a female. Most women can't have an orgasm from intercourse alone. You need to make sure that when you next have sex, she has an orgasm, which you should give her any way that she indicates is best, such as using your fingers to stimulate her clitoris. If a woman is not getting sexual satisfaction from having sex, then it certainly could seem like only a chore to her.
I also would suggest that you be more romantic at other times. Women take longer to become aroused than men do, but if you spend a few days offering romantic gestures, that should help her to become aroused.
Of course, if you have a deeper relationship issue, then that would have to be resolved and might require counseling, but for now, try this more simple approach.
Q: My boyfriend and I have been together for almost a year. I messed up, big time.
A few months ago I was "sexting" with some random people on this app I found on the phone. He found out and of course was hurt, mad, etc. He left for a few days, and I begged him to come back and promised I wouldn't do anything like that ever again. I really don't even know why I did it.
I got rid of my phone for him, gave him access to my Facebook and email, and have done everything I can think of. He still looks up things about me every day using different emails, user names, etc., to see if I'm doing anything behind his back.
I honestly have done everything I can think of to show him, but it's starting to put a strain on our relationship because he keeps thinking I'm doing something. I know I hurt him, but he's hurting me now by thinking I'm doing something when I'm at work, before work or after work. I even call him every hour while I'm at work. What can we do to fix this?
A: What you did was wrong, though it wasn't like you had actual sex with anybody, but there's no doubt that he has a right to be upset. But perhaps this might end up being a good thing for you, because his reaction seems to be exaggerated, and perhaps he is not the right person for you.
You are bending over backward, or so it seems to me, and yet he won't let go of this. If that's a part of his personality, then the likelihood that something else would set him off is pretty good. So if he won't stop this exaggerated behavior, my advice to you is to break off the relationship, count your blessings and find someone new with whom you can have a fresh start.
Q: Is it OK for my husband and me to attend sex clubs and partake of the activities, or is there something wrong with this in a marriage? Is something wrong with us for liking this? I'm morally confused!
A: There are two issues at play here. One is the moral issue. Your marriage vows didn't include having sex with other people, I'm certain. But from my perspective as a therapist, the other issue to consider is what this will do to your marriage in the long run.
I hear from lots of people who've tried threesomes and swinging, etc., whose marriages have broken up because of it. A marriage easily can become frayed and tear apart, so my advice to you would be to stop engaging in these activities.
"Dr. Ruth's Sex After 50" (Quill Driver Books) is Dr. Ruth Westheimer's latest book. Have a question for Dr. Ruth? Write to her at drruth.com.