Don't make assumptions about fading sex life

Q: My boyfriend and I are in our early 20s and have been living together for more than a year.

At the beginning of our relationship, we had sex every day, and then it dropped down to several times a week, which was perfect.

However, in the past several months, he wants to have sex only once a week, and he says he's not in the mood when I come on to him. When I've tried to talk to him about it and tell him that I need more sex in our relationship, he says that he doesn't have the same level of sexual energy that I do and it feels weird to conjure it up when it's not there.

I'm not sure what to do at this point. I've tried to explain to him how detrimental the rejection is to our relationship, but he says that I don't understand his point of view. How could a 26-year-old guy want sex only once a week?

To be fair, we both work crazy hours and work at night when we get home.

We've brought up the idea of scheduling sex, but it really takes the sexiness and spontaneity out of it. Thoughts?

A: Don't put him in a pigeonhole. We all have different sexual appetites, and outside factors, like a busy work life, also affect each person differently.

If you really require more sexual satisfaction, I would tell you to masturbate. Of course, if he were in my office, I'd tell him that it's OK to "force" yourself now and then — not so often that having sex becomes a chore, but once in a while.

And as for scheduling sex, I'm all for that if a couple's busy life interferes too much.

Just as you would like for him to make himself ready when you want sex, there's nothing wrong with both of you putting some added energy into getting into the mood at times you choose in advance.

Q: My lover, age 54, has no problem with his erection when we make love. However, it takes 30 minutes or more to reach orgasm, if at all.

Even with K-Y lubricant to keep things moving, I still am getting sore because he will not stop until he reaches orgasm.

Is there anything that could be wrong? What medical conditions could cause this? Could alcohol have anything to do with this?

A: As we age, we all undergo various physical changes, and for a man to require more time to have an orgasm in his 50s is not uncommon. (A plus is that many men who have problems with premature ejaculation lose this problem as they get older.)

However, you asked about alcohol, and if he has several drinks before you two have sex, that could be a contributing factor.

Why don't you two have sex in the morning? First of all, that's when the male sex hormone, testosterone, is at its highest level. And the odds are that in the morning, alcohol won't be a factor.

So try that, and let me know if things improve.

Q: My girlfriend and I haven't had sex yet, but she tells me that she doesn't like condoms because not only does she hate the feel of them inside her, but also because she is allergic to latex.

I suggested nonlatex condoms, but she still said no and said that she prefers "the real thing" without any protection on me, and says I should just pull out of her vagina when I'm ready to ejaculate.

She tells me that she is practically infertile due to some mystery condition I don't know about, but I get the feeling this could all be a cover-up to get herself pregnant, even though we both agreed that we never want to be parents, ever.

What shall I do? I've been so used to condoms all my life, but she hates them, and neither of us wants to be a parent! I'm confused!

A: Condoms serve two purposes: One is to prevent pregnancy, and the other is to prevent the spread of disease.

If you are sure that she is disease-free — i.e., she's been tested and has shown you the results — then it's possible to prevent a pregnancy without condoms.

The withdrawal method is not reliable, but she could go on the pill.

My advice is to tell her that you do not trust the withdrawal method and ask her if she is willing to go on the pill.

"Dr. Ruth's Sex After 50" (Quill Driver Books) is Dr. Ruth Westheimer's latest book. Do you have a question for Dr. Ruth? Write to her at her website drruth.com.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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