Mismatched Libidos; What to do when one partner has a low sex drive

When one partner has a low sex drive and the other wants sex all the time, it’s a recipe for trouble. It’s an incredibly common relationship problem that plagues couples all over the world.

Sex and intimacy are a critical part of a happy relationship; it keeps the partners connected and in tune with one another. But life has a way of getting in the way at times; people are busy and tired from work, kids, activities, etc. But without intimacy, the relationship will not be strong nor will it be fulfilling.

The quantity and the type of intimacy that a person desires will of course vary from person to person. The major problem comes when those desires are vastly different between the two partners.

low sex drive vs high libidoThe reality for too many partners that have the higher sex drive is that they eventually give up asking and pleading for sex and they leave, cheat or resign themselves to a sexless relationship. Giving up hope and living in that relationship without the intimate encounters will eventually eat away at the person and the other positive aspects of the relationship will break down over time as well.

Not a good prognosis!

Let’s look at this from the perspective of the other side.

For someone that does not desire physical intimacy, finding out WHY could mean meeting their needs and salvaging your relationship.

Some questions to ask about the person with the lower libido:

  • Is there a medical issue? A hormonal imbalance?
  • Have they had previous sexual encounters that were negative? Were they sexually abused or harassed?
  • How much trust has been established between the two of you?
  • Do they have negative body image issues?

These questions will get the dialogue started between the couple so that you can better understand each other and start to meet the needs of the other.

What to do about the Mismatched Libidos


low sex drive vs high libidoEnough with the silent resentment! And stop making excuses while you’re at it. No more avoiding or giving the cold shoulder; none of that will get you anywhere!

First and most importantly: be honest with yourself!

What do YOU want? What’s in YOUR best interest? Forget what everyone else around you wants or says is best for you… what do YOU really want?

Second, have the courage to talk things through with your partner. Do this outside of the bedroom and away from a time and a space that someone would want sex. It’s MUCH easier to have these discussions when there is zero expectation for sex immediately following your discussion. (If the conversation leads to intimacy naturally because of the conversation, that’s fine, but do NOT set it up with the expectation that just because you told your partner that you want more sex that they’ll immediately roll over and give it to you.)

Be really calm and giving in your discussion. Remember, this is supposed to be your loving and supportive partner. Getting mad at them isn’t going to help here.

Be very honest in telling your partner what it is that you want. Talk about the quantity you desire. Talk about experiences you’d like to have together. Ask them what they desire and what is the right quantity for them. This is just a way to start the dialogue between you both so that you can come together again and start reconnecting.

Some other issues to consider:

  • Is your partner too tired? Too stressed? What can you do to lessen their burden?
  • Do they have a different love language? (Read more about that HERE.) Offer lots of their love language to them; this is a basic first step in getting them to reconnect with you as a couple.
  • If you start a conversation with your partner about your relationship and the state of your sex life and you get shut down or they walk away from you, then take a step back and read the article RELATIONSHIP REPAIR.

Health Issues

The first thing to consider is any health concerns that may be contributing to a low sex drive. Most of these concerns can be treated medically, homeopathically or by altering your lifestyle. So I suggest addressing these concerns first and hopefully getting them resolved, if they exist.

From The Mayo Clinic website on causes of low libido in women:

Physical causes

A wide range of illnesses, physical changes and medications can cause a low sex drive, including:

  • Sexual problems. If you have pain during sex or can’t orgasm, it can reduce your desire for sex.
  • Medical diseases. Many nonsexual diseases can affect sex drive, including arthritis, cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, coronary artery disease and neurological diseases.
  • Medications. Certain prescription drugs, especially antidepressants called selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, are known to lower the sex drive.
  • Lifestyle habits. A glass of wine may put you in the mood, but too much alcohol can affect your sex drive. The same is true of street drugs. Also, smoking decreases blood flow, which may dull arousal.
  • Surgery. Any surgery related to your breasts or genital tract can affect your body image, sexual function and desire for sex.
  • Fatigue. Exhaustion from caring for young children or aging parents can contribute to low sex drive. Fatigue from illness or surgery also can play a role in a low sex drive.
  • Hormone changes in women. Changes in your hormone levels may alter your desire for sex.
Relationship issues

low sex drive vs high libidoFor many women, emotional closeness is an essential prelude to sexual intimacy. So problems in your relationship can be a major factor in low sex drive. Decreased interest in sex is often a result of ongoing issues, such as:

  • Lack of connection with your partner
  • Unresolved conflicts or fights
  •  Poor communication of sexual needs and preferences
  • Trust issues

The article also goes on to discuss psychological causes that can contribute to low sex drive, specially for women. Read the full article HERE.

General Low Libido

If you find that you or your partner simply has little desire for sex or intimacy, but is otherwise healthy per the issues discussed above,

Try Maca Root

maca rootMaca Root is known as “Nature’s Viagra.” That might give you all that you need to know about this natural supplement!

There is more and more information coming out on this South American plant as known as Peruvian ginseng. Some of the benefits touted for Maca include:

  • Natural aphrodisiac
  • Increases Libido for men and women
  • Boosts energy naturally
  • Boosts immune system
  • Regulates hormones, particularly estrogen
  • Reduces erectile dysfunction
  • Increases fertility in both men and women
  • Reduces symptoms for menopausal women including hot flashes
  • Increases vaginal lubrication
  • Helps regulate menstrual cycles
  • High in iron to combat anemia
  • Reduces blood pressure
  • Improves mood

I have taken Maca Root myself for the last 6+ months. (I take 2-3 capsules daily depending on my energy levels.) What I have noticed for me personally is the increased energy (it’s amazing!), increased sex drive, regulated estrogen levels, increased vaginal lubrication, and I don’t get sick as often. But everyone’s body is different, and therefore it goes without saying that everyone might have a different experience here.

There are lots of sources of information on the web on this supplement and countless others. I urge you to take stock of the source of the information; medically-backed sources are going to always default to drugs, surgery and doctors as the solution to any ailment. Why? Because they want your money to be continuously spent with them.

You have to decide what’s right for you. There is a time and a place for modern medicine; no doubt. For me personally, if I can find a natural remedy for my health issues, that’s always my preference.

Here are a few sources of info on Maca Root’s health benefits:

9 Benefits of Maca Roots (And Potential Side Effects)

Maca Root is Touted as a Major Fertility Booster; Here’s Why

Authentic Sex Podcast with Juliet Allen (I personally LOVE her podcasts!) discussing mismatched libidos, low libido and her experience with Maca Root:

10 Amazing Maca Root Benefits for Men and Women:

You can find Maca Root in most health food stores. And no, I am not making a commission on telling you about this supplement; I just want more people to know about this amazing solution!

Negative Sexual History

Do you or your partner have any negative sexual experience from their past? If you haven’t asked your partner this, now is the time.

Be aware and sensitive to any triggers that may cause your partner to shut down intimately. You cannot fix their past, but you can provide a safe space for them to open up to you. And that starts with not recreating or triggering those negative past experiences.


How much trust has been built up between you and your partner? Do they feel comfortable and safe in your presence to freely be themselves?

Or has trust been lost because of something that was or was not done?

Being intimate with another person takes lots of trust so that you can expose yourself to them without reservation and be real and raw and stay in the moment without fear of judgement or abuse.

If trust is not fully present in either person’s eyes, then intimacy will either be forced or non-existent.

Negative Body Image Issues

If you are with a partner that has negative body image issues about themselves, this is something that you can help them through. But it will take lots of patience and lots of loving praise from you. You can also offer to get them professional therapy that will help them battle their negative self-image as well.

One of the best things you can do is to offer lots of compliments.

The compliments don’t have to be forced; they will see right through that. But keep it genuine; concentrate on traits of your partner that you really do love. And tell them why you love that about them! When you first start doing this, your partner may look at you like you’re ridiculous for saying something like, “I love the way chin curves in just this way because it reminds me of just how much I love caressing and kissing your face.”

Keep your compliments specific to your partner, and above all else- keep it genuine! And then keep giving more compliments. One compliment is great, but as your partner keeps hearing them on a consistent basis is when they will START to believe them. So keep at it.

When you feel ready, try this scene:

low sex drive vs high libidoIn front of a mirror (full length preferably,) stand behind your partner so that you are both facing the mirror. Ask them to watch everything you do in the mirror. Slowly and gently tell them everything that you love about their body. Start this scene with both of you being clothed, and if they are comfortable, clothes can eventually come off. You may find you need to repeat this scene many times before that can happen. And that’s ok!

Tell them in detail how beautiful / handsome / sexy they are to you. Tell them that it doesn’t matter what other people say, what the media says is supposed to be beautiful, what their family members say, all that matters in that space is your acceptance of them just as they are in that moment. Keep telling them this until they start to believe you. This scene may have to be played out many, many times before that happens. If what you are saying to them comes from a place of love and acceptance, then your authenticity will come through. Just keep speaking from that place.

This is where consistency really makes all the difference.

People that have negative body images have been feeding themselves the message that they aren’t worthy, that they are not beautiful for most of their life. It’s going to take more than one session of reassurance to undo that.

You may first encounter disbelief. And that’s ok. They don’t believe that they’re beautiful / handsome, so why would they believe you? Just keep telling them everything you love about them. You might also be met with tears. And that’s ok too. Love them through those tears. Those tears mean that you are breaking through to them.

Keep creating this scene for your partner and over time you will hopefully find that they open up to you as they open up themselves physically. And that’s a beautiful moment! Give them lots of love and praise! And they will continue to unfold and open for you more and more.

There are so many ways you can involve your partner in more sexual activity – without expecting them to have sex with you. Seem counter-intuitive? Hear me out…

Here’s another scene that you could try if you are the partner with the higher sex drive:

Here’s what you get to do: masturbate in front of your partner FOR them. (Well let’s be real; it’s really for you!) It really is ok to be sexual in front of your partner and to include them in that… it may just turn them on!

Tell your partner ahead of time what you intend to do and tell them they do not need to participate, and in fact you encourage them to ONLY watch. Tell them that it turns you on to see them and think about them when you touch yourself. And it would be a highly erotic experience that you would really enjoy doing with them if they would simply watch.

After a few (or many?) of these masturbation sessions, they may want to join in and help you, or they might masturbate themselves while you get to watch. When they engage at all, give them lots (and I mean LOTS!) of praise and tell them how sexy they are. That will encourage them to do more!

There are a million variations to these two scenes that I’ve laid out; you have to find something that works for you and your partner.
  • Take your partner on a long overdue date! Recreate your first date. Flirt with them like you used to. Do what you did in the beginning of the relationship. It’s so important to not stop dating each other. That effort is so sexy!
  • You may find that a sensual massage is a great way to be intimate. If your partner does not want intercourse, then honor that and enjoy the fuck out of that sensual massage!
  • You can shower together; just be sure to make it a sensual experience! Your partner is not allowed to soap themselves; that’s your job. Take your time and enjoy touching their body. Pamper them with your attention. If they are resistant to this, offer to wash their back or shampoo their hair and massage their scalp. That’s a heavenly feeling and can be highly erotic itself!
  • Read erotic short stories to each other at bed time. Do it in a sexy and enticing voice.
  • You can add toys into your intimate play if that is suitable to the level of your intimacy. It’s a great way to create some variation into a sex life that’s gone stale.
  • You might find that one partner climaxes before the other during sex. Then the one that’s done gets to watch the other and stay engaged until the other finishes by masturbation. Offer lots of verbal praise while you witness; it’s a fantastic way to stay involved in the intimate act.
For any of these scenes, pay very close attention to their reaction when you tell them your plans.

If you’re not sure how to bring up the subject, try this:

“Hey honey, I’d love to run an idea by you. I’m curious to know if you’d be up for trying something new and intimate with me. I’ve been craving more of you and wanted to try something to reconnect.”

They might be shocked at your proposed suggestion. Just reassure them that all is good between you, but that you just desire more sex and intimacy. They might get excited at your suggestion; and that would be amazing!

But if they flatly turn you down, refuse to talk about it, or blow you off completely then a serious discussion needs to happen ASAP as to why they refuse to engage with you intimately or even in a discussion on the subject.

Sex and intimacy are critical components of a healthy adult relationship.

Denying that part of your relationship sets up major issues that can surface in a million different ways. So it’s essential to actually work through any differences you may have with your partner instead of ignoring them.

It might be hard to address issues of sex and libido with your partner because no one is taught that it’s ok to talk about sex, nor are we taught how to talk about it in a calm rational manner without offending anyone.

Have the courage to speak your truth, (read more on that HERE,) and know that your desires are valid and worthy of attention.

It all comes down to this:

You have to ask for what you want. How will you get it otherwise?

low sex drive vs high libidoDo NOT make the mistake of expecting your partner to magically know what you want! That is an immature mistake.

  1. Know what YOU really want / need / desire
  2. Speak up and ask for it!

It really can be that easy.

Please have the courage to make it that easy!

Peace & love & great sex to you all!


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