Is Being in a Sexless Marriage Grounds for a Divorce?

BY: - 25 Jul '17 | Intimacy

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Dear Dr. Buckingham,

I have been with my husband for 25 years, married for 19. We have three kids (21,18,13). After having my last daughter, something changed with me. I want sex all the time. The problem is, it’s like I have to beg my husband for sex. Most of the time it’s like I’m begging my own husband for sex.

He works two jobs, getting up 5 days a week at 4 o’clock am. So I understand he is tired. But I’m not asking for it every night, just enough to know that he still finds me attractive. I have often expressed my hurt feelings. He apologizes, but then it happens all over again. At this point I’m thinking of a separation. Would I be wrong? Is Being in a Sexless Marriage Grounds for a Divorce?


Feeling neglected

Ask Dr. Buckingham

Dear Feeling neglected,

I am sorry that you feel neglected and are sexually frustrated, but I am not sure that giving up on your marriage is the best solution at this time. Physical intimacy is important, but it is not uncommon for sexual intimacy to decline after many years of marriage. In my professional work, I have counseled hundreds of couples who have had sexual challenges in their marriages, especially in the later years.

Sexless marriages evolve from several situations to include, but not limited to, the following:

  1. Failure to make time for each and other
  2. Sexual dysfunctions such as premature ejaculation, pain during intercourse, etc.
  3. Natural aging (body changes)
  4. Low libido (caused by a decrease in testosterone levels in men)

Please be mindful that sex is not just a mental or emotional thing. When sexual intimacy is absent, other things might be present that include some of the interpersonal, physiological, and psychological challenges mentioned above.

If you want to increase sexual intimacy in your marriage, here are three tips that might be helpful.

Schedule Sex Time

You stated that your husband works a lot and is probably tired. Given this, speak with him about times when he feels most energetic and horny. If you want to have sex on a regular basis in your marriage make sure that you maximize your time. I understand that both men and women prefer having spontaneous sex, but scheduled sex is better than no sex.

Scheduled sex takes pressure off individuals because they do not have to worry about trying to perform when they are not in the mood. Bad sex creates anxiety and individuals dread sexual interactions. When you schedule sex time each person has the opportunity to mentally prepare, which could lead to a sexual escapade.

Visit a Medical Doctor with your Husband

Your husband could have testosterone problems and do not know it. Testosterone is a hormone that is responsible for the development of male sexual characteristics. It promotes healthy sexual drive (libido) in men. When a man’s testosterone level dips below 300 nanograms per deciliter, his desire for sex will also dip. Your husband could probably benefit from testosterone injections.

Speak with a Sex Therapist

I often find that couples do not fully understand the many challenges that can cause and/or contribute to a sexless marriage. With this in mind, I often recommend that they speak with therapists who specialize in sex issues. Such therapists can help you and your husband come up with reasonable solutions that can help with reconnection.

Physical intimacy is important, but it is not uncommon for sexual intimacy to decline after many years of marriage.

Remember that sexual gratification is difficult to acquire and sustain if mental and physical health is not present. Your desire to be gratified physically should be secondary to your desire to understand and connect with your husband. Also, remember that behavioral change does not last with pressure, but with passion. Your husband has to find passion in your bedroom in order to perform.

Implement the three tips listed above and I promise you that your understanding of your sexual challenges will be enhanced. Seek understanding before you seek a divorce.

Best regards,

Dr. Buckingham

If you have questions for Dr. Dwayne Buckingham regarding relationships (married, single, etc), parenting, or personal growth and development, please send an email to

Disclaimer: The ideas, opinions and recommendations contained in this post are not intended as a substitute for seeking professional counseling or guidance. Any concerns or questions that you have about relationships or any other source of potential distress should be discussed with a professional, in person. The author is not liable or responsible for any personal or relational distress, loss or damage allegedly arising from any information or recommendations in this post.

About the author

Dwayne Buckingham wrote 207 articles on this blog.

Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham, author of Qualified, yet Single: Why Good Men Remain Single and Unconditional Love: What Every Woman and Man Desires in a Relationship, is a highly acclaimed international clinical psychotherapist, life coach, relationship and resiliency expert, motivational speaker and corporate consultant. He is also the President and Chief Executive Officer of R.E.A.L. Horizons Consulting Service, located in Silver Spring, Maryland. To learn more about Dr. Dwayne L. Buckingham visit his website at


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Protect Your Castle and Get Sex on the Regular in Your Marriage

BY: - 26 Jul '17 | Intimacy

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By: Dr. George James

In medieval times, or in any episode of Game of Thrones, you’ll find that people literally live in a castle. It could be a King and his Queen, a Lord and Lady, or a Duke and Duchess.  As such, the castle is uniquely built to keep noble men and women safe from invaders.  Boundaries such as high walls, arrow slits, drawbridges, and moats are used to defend and  protect both the individuals and the valuables of the castle. Well, in our relationships, we need to protect our intimacy and sex life with boundaries just like a castle.



You see, without boundaries, anyone could invade and take over the castle.  It would be difficult to maintain power, consistency, or nobility if just anyone is allowed to breach its walls.  Yet surprisingly, we allow all forms of intrusion when it comes to our intimacy and sex life.

It can be easy to ignore boundaries when it comes to work, or friends, family, and other responsibilities. But, without boundaries in these areas, we leave no time for intimacy and sex. If you find that you are too tired, too busy, and too stressed to spend quality and sexual time with your partner, then you are not protecting your castle. The good thing is that it’s not too late to make a change and revive your intimacy and sex life.

5 Steps to Getting Sex on the Regular in Your Marriage

  1. Schedule Your Booty Call – A lot of people think that if you have to schedule time to have sex, it is not romantic. But it is. For a lot of people with busy lives, you might not have any time for intimacy and sex if you don’t schedule it.  Make sure no one will interfere with your time. Set your boundaries and schedule your booty call with your spouse.
  2. Remember Your Partner is important too – It can be easy to focus on the kids, job, family and friends. Sometimes, you might even say the things you do are important. But your partner is important too.  Let him or her know that they are still a high priority for you.  Do something special and then get it on.
  3. Take Turns Initiating the Romance – When was the last time you initiated sex or made sure there was a babysitter for the kids? Don’t leave it up to your partner to get the party started. Take turns.  This time, you are up.
  4. Spend Non-Sexual Quality Time – Being intimate does not always mean sex. It is important to have non-sexual quality time.  This includes being close, holding hands, kissing, etc without the expectation or pressure of sex. Adding this to your routine can help build your closeness and passion.
  5. Make Sure to Keep it Sexy – You are still attractive to your partner. But your partner still wants to see you sexy side. That outfit, cologne/perfume, that look or even how you talk.  Let her or him know that you want to be with them.  Spice it up try something new or something from the past.

In The Drop By, the third episode, of the new web series “Funny Married Stuff ,” a couple uses a humorous approach to discuss what it takes to protect the intimacy and passion in their marriage from invaders such as friends, family, work and busy schedules.  Check out the episode here:

Maybe you find yourself in a similar situation as the couple in this episode or you relate to the example above.  Take time to discuss how to maintain intimacy and sex in your relationship. Protecting your love life is as important as protecting your castle because once you stop defending what’s yours, it can be taken away and even harder to recover.

For more episodes and information about Funny Married Stuff go to and

Dr. George James, LMFT speaks, counsels, consults, coaches and teaches people how to overcome difficult relationships problems and build successful happy connections. James has been a reoccurring expert on many radio, TV and online programs. He is also a reoccurring relationship contributor to Ebony magazine. James is a staff therapist and an AAMFT-approved supervisor at Council For Relationships.  Find out more about Dr. George James at

About the author

BMWK Staff wrote 1245 articles on this blog.

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