I’m mid-30s with a partner of 6 years who I love very much and am attracted to, but I have no sex drive. Every time we have sex, I am forcing myself to do it. And it makes me absolutely miserable. Why don’t I want to have sex or enjoy it like I used to? I am on oral contraceptives and have been for 20 years at this point. I know this can be a big factor but stopping them is not an option for me right now.

And I’ve had this weird shift in my brain within the last year where all sex feels exploitive to me. I used to watch porn and enjoy it, now it makes me extremely uncomfortable.

I want to feel normal and I want to physically express the love to my partner that he deserves. I feel like I’m crazy and I wish I could just get it together.

Have you ever experienced this?

Ams: I want to focus on two things from your post: 1. sex as exploitative and 2. body issues and depression.

1. If you are feeling like sex is exploitative, even with your loving partner, could that be because you aren’t having the kind of sex that meets your sexual desires?

I used to feel the same way as you do about sex: I spent the first 20 years of my sex life having the kind of sex that I thought my partner wanted and then said, FUCK THAT…I’m going to figure out what I enjoy in bed. And an amazing thing happened. When I told my husband what I wanted, he was THRILLED to make that happen and now we have an amazing sex life.

So, maybe part of tackling this problem is exploring what satisfying sex looks like for you, and telling your partner so that the two of you can explore it together.

2. Body issues, weight gain and depression are bigger mental wellness issues that are worth addressing (we could ALL use a therapist right now!) and no woman wants to have sex if they don’t feel sexy. But, as your are working through those issues, also consider that amazing sex in itself is a form of self-care.

So, set yourself up for success in the bedroom. Take a bath, do your hair, set the lighting low and play sexy music…whatever helps you get in the mood and feel your best.

You deserve to have satisfying sex.

Best of luck!

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