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Jennifer (name changed) didn't have sex with her ex-husband on their wedding night. "I chalked it up to fatigue," she says. But should it have been a red flag? Well, maybe.

It's not that it didn't happen that one night that was the problem; it's that it was the first of many sexless married nights. As an engaged couple, Jennifer and her fiancé were doing it about three times a week, but once they said their vows, it quickly dwindled to about once a month—sometimes less.

Some experts call marriages that average 10 rolls in the hay per year or less "sexless," but other experts take the word more literally, like Susan Yager-Berkowitz, who coauthored (with her husband) Why Men Stop Having Sex: The Phenomenon of Sexless Relationships and What You Can Do About It.

"If a couple is content with intimacy less than once a month, and happily married, I doubt they would refer to themselves as having a sexless marriage… and neither would we."

Dean Mason, who runs the website, FixYourSexlessMarriage.com, agrees, "Each person defines what his or her sex threshold is." 

But even if there's no perfect definition for a "sexless" marriage, everyone seems to agree that they're common. Newsweek estimates that about 15 to 20 percent of couples are in one, and sexless marriage is the topic of myriad new books—like Yager-Berkowitz's—and plenty of articles and columns. Back in 2003, Newsweek's cover blared, "We're Not In the Mood," and the story hasn't gone away. This June, The New York Times reported that about 15 percent of married couples had not done the deed in the past six months to a year.

Click here to read the rest of the article on YourTango.

 

Related Articles on YourTango.com:

12 Relationship Red Flags

Marrying Mr. Wrong

Break Up. Cancel Wedding. Throw A Party.

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3 comments

  • Comment Link nt44 Wednesday, 22 July 2015 18:13 posted by nt44

    I didn´t have sex on my wedding night either, only a few times on my honeymoon, which lead to a beautiful son, Thank God! After that for 15 years there was nothing at all, zero, zilch. It made me feel very depressed, ugly, unwanted and sent my self-esteem into the gutter. I tried changing my appearance, being more ambitious, and the list goes on...I also wanted more children, my husband´s response was always backed up by some silly excuse, which I bought in to. After 10 sexless years, he told me that if I wanted another child we could do artificial insemination! Needless to say, I told him no and continued on for another 5 years, then I said to him that I could no longer go on like this and asked him for a divorce. He then told me that he could not be hugging me and kissing me all day, this is after not kissing me for more than 2 years and, well, we hadn´t slept in a bed together for 2-3...WTF. He also told me that it was my fault that we didn´t have anymore children....Anyway, I have been divorced for 3 months and am moving on with my life at a slow but steadily pace. It would be nice if there were more articles or groups dedicated to this topic as it is for me a form of abuse that most people don´t really know about. I am sorry but I don´t agree with this crap about being able to fix this sexless marriage problem unless you nip it in the butt right away (my husband refused any type of therapy). A marriage without intimacy is doomed.

  • Comment Link Guest Thursday, 16 August 2012 00:53 posted by Guest

    Article: Wow! I've never told my story, but that woman in the story, well, that could be me. For us, we've been married now almost 15 years, and I would estimate that we've only been intimate fewer than 100 times. Amazingly, we have 4 children! My husband and MIL would allow me to believe that this is WHY we aren't intimate. His method of birth control is abstinence. But honestly, with all of the methods available, I do not believe this.

    I feel that it is necessary to tell my story because sometimes I feel so sad, alone, depressed, and rejected. My last pregnancy caused me to gain a lot of weight; my only son, and I have never been able to loose most of that weight. So I am an honest 50 lbs overweight. This doesn't help me emotionally or psychologically with the rejection, but, the fact is, he wasn't interested in me either when I still had my figure. Like the woman in the story above, nothing on our wedding night, nor for several days after we married.

  • Comment Link Guest Monday, 21 June 2010 12:01 posted by Guest

    Sexless Marriage: It's always important to fix a sexless marriage before the relationship runs dry. Great information here. I look forward to reading more!