Mismatched libidos, or desire discrepancy, is extremely common in relationships. Although most of us realise that every one is different, when it comes to sexual desire we often assume that our partner will want sex as much as we do. When either partner wants more, or less, sex then the other, it can be a frustrating and hurtful experience for both people.
It is important to acknowledge that neither person is right or wrong, but just different. Be open to discuss differences without judgement, defences or attacks. Be kind to each other and own your own feelings. Rather then “you are this or that” try statements like “I feel rejected” or “I would like…”. Remember that when it comes to talking sex, it is a vulnerable experience for most of us so its important to be gentle and considerate. Remain curious about your partner, listen, and ask questions rather then assuming you know the answers. This will make sure conversation remains open and honest so you can support each other to find solutions.
We are often good at assuming things about our partners. You may think your partner is controlling or doesn’t love you but they might also think the same thing! Such assumptions can lead to feelings of loneliness and isolation. Maybe your partner is just exhausted or stressed from work or parenting and they don’t feel like sex in that moment. It can be hard but it's important to learn to share concerns with our partners, especially if it is impacting the relationship.
It can be helpful to have a broader and more creative approach to how we perceive sex. Sex can be a relaxing and sumptuous experience of receiving pleasure (not just genital pleasure) and also titillating for the giver. Sexual play can be about surrender and receiving pleasure in the form of massage or stroking whilst watching your partner achieve sexual self stimulation. So if one person is exhausted and the other energized, think of ways to express your sexuality given the energy imbalance.
To fully surrender to the moment, it’s a good idea to let your partner know how you want to be touched and where you don’t want to be touched. For example, you could say any where except the genitals, or only your back and not your front. (Boundaries are flexible and you can always can your mind). Once you set your boundaries, you can then surrender and relax to the moment, allowing your partner to caress you.
A good lover is a sensitive person who can be flexible, creative and adaptable. A good lover is willing to attend to needs of the other, given the realities of life circumstances. Instead of working against each other, try to please the other person so they feel more loved, secure and empowered. As you give your partner more of what make them feel good, it will give you both the confidence to grow as intimate partners.
Last point. If you are rejected by your lover, take measures to attend to your own sexual needs and give yourself what you desire. Create an erotic space, have a hot bath with scents, light candles or incense, and give yourself tender, loving pleasure. There is so much more to sexual self exploration and it helps us to become better lovers!