No sex... if that's okay with you?
January 9, 2011 2:54 PM Subscribe
I feel under enormous amounts of pressure to have sex with my boyfriend, but I'm just not interested in sex right now. I have some issues with anxiety/depression, and I'm going through therapy that is raising certain questions for me about the nature of my past sexual interactions. I'm very confused, and I need time to sort it all out. But in the meantime, what am I supposed to do/say? What do I owe my SO as a loving partner? (possibly nsfw)
posted by Tulip to Human Relations (22 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
I feel under enormous amounts of pressure to have sex with my boyfriend, but I'm just not interested in sex right now. I have some issues with anxiety/depression, and I'm going through therapy that is raising certain questions for me about the nature of my past sexual interactions. I'm very confused, and I need time to sort it all out.
I've been dating my early-20s boyfriend for over a year now. We started sleeping together very early on in the relationship, and we've had dry spells and fiery spells. However, in the past couple of months, I have been bursting into tears at the idea of having sex or saying no to it. I just don't want to have sex with him, but I can't explain direct reasons why, though I am at least trying to figure it out in therapy. I feel terrible because he is such a tender, caring, loyal, kind SO.
The big problem is that I am breaking under this pressure that I feel to have sex with him. I'm sick of feeling he's going to take advantage of every time we kiss, or go out for drinks, or go out to dinner, or go to bed as an opportunity to propose having sex together. It makes me want to avoid being intimate with him in any form, about which I feel sad and resentful.
I understand that he has sexual/intimacy needs too, and I want him to be able to express them. However, I also resent him for certain things (e.g. groping me under the clothes after I said I didn't want to have sex but just sleep, or coming up with a million ways to get me alone in bed with him only THEN to reveal he wants to have sex). A lot of the time, I think we are just having a communication breakdown. Like, maybe he thought me saying "no" just means "no, but you could maybe convince me otherwise". Or that when I say "I'm tired and want to sleep" that translates to "Let's climb in bed and have sex." In movies / other relationships, this may be how things are communicated, but really I'm being straightforward when I am speaking about what I want to do. If anything, I definitely tend toward pretending to be interested in sex. However, to start being more assertive, I'm really trying to stop pretending interest (thus all the tears, etc. as I struggle with this).
I know that it is asking something really abnormal to decline sex time and time again in a relationship. He might feel rejected or frustrated, I guess I realize that maybe he will want to break up with me because of that. But I'd like to find a way to work with our relationship the best that I can. Feeling pressured to sleep with my SO who may really be okay with waiting seems like a stupid reason for me to break up with him. But how am I supposed to think through or behave in this kind of a situation? What do I do / say while I work out my own issues with sex? What do I owe him as a loving partner?