Archives for November 2020
I appreciate you’re not a medical doctor so can’t comment on potential physical causes for this issue, but I’m not even sure where to start looking for advice on this that doesn’t immediately descend into snake-oil and weird assumptions. I’ve been following your blog since the sex-positive hey-day of the late aughts, so I hope you or your followers might have some pointers. (We’re in the UK, for accessing resources purposes)
So, my husband (M39) and I (M35) have been together nine years, lived together four, and married for two (and before some cleverclogs in the comments suggests it, no, there’s been no infidelity). I get that one’s sex life tends to get less athletic as you get older and more familiar, but we’ve got an ongoing problem that is just getting upsetting now, namely that my husband is experiencing premature ejaculation when he’s topping during penetrative sex. I think it started maybe 5 years ago – he’d been going through a pretty stressful time with one thing and another, I tried not to make a Big Deal of it when it started because I didn’t want to give him a complex – and it’s got to the point where he goes off a matter of seconds after he’s in. It’s uncomfortable for me (he’s even hurt me a couple of times when he’s involuntarily thrust before I was ready), and unsatisfying for both of us (he’s only getting the most perfunctory orgasm out of it).
It’s also deeply upsetting for him, because it plays into a whole slew of insecurity about being “undesirable” and “unlovable” no matter how much I try to convince him that I do love him and desire him very much. He doesn’t have a problem getting or maintaining and erection, and lasts for a normal length of time during other kinds of sex, it’s literally just topping. Thing is, although we do have and enjoy having non-penetrative sex (I’m including oral in that, fwiw), he’s sort of got it in his head now that anal is some sort of Gold Standard and that I couldn’t possibly be satisfied by anything else. And, like, I am, of course I am and I let him know that, but if I’m going to be honest, though, and also conform to stereotype, sometimes I like being fucked and I do miss it. (As a couple of asides/ context points, he doesn’t especially enjoy bottoming, and I have depression which can make my sexual response a bit hit and miss sometimes, but I’m usually happy to get him off even if I’m feeling dead from the waist down)
So, how do we even begin to address this? I’m pretty sure it’s a psychological thing rather than a physical one, and he’s being stubborn about going to his GP about it. We had limited success with me getting him off, then giving it half an hour before trying, but he got worried he was just training himself to cum too quickly that way too and stopped it. I actually have no idea what his masturbation habits are like, we’re both deeply private about that (thanks conservative upbringing!). I’m seriously worried this is going to start impacting on all aspects of intimacy between us, as we do get into vicious cycles of avoiding sex, or anything that could be interpreted as initiating sex, because of the upset it causes both of us. I love him, I think he’s terribly attractive, and we otherwise have a very close, supportive, affectionate relationship, but I know from past experience that nothing kills a relationship faster than lack of intimacy.
Thanks for any suggestions,
Slow Speed Racer, Slow
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Hi there Dr NerdLove,
I’m in a mess. I was supposed to get married this summer until we postponed for COVID; then two months ago my fiancé confessed to cheating on me. Not like once or twice, but probably twenty times with maybe a dozen different women, from one-night stands to hookups with a friend of his who I always distrusted to paying for blowjobs at a strip club, happy endings and prostitutes, to more one night stands and bar make outs, to an acquaintance of his (I had seen him flirt with her which feels awful), and lastly with a friend of mine several times after he moved in with me!! Ha!! This was mainly in the first three years of our relationship though earlier this year, while in pre-marital counseling, he ditched me to hang with some poly friends of friends and made out with a woman, though he confessed after.
My last ex cheated on and gaslit me terribly, which fiancé knew. Meanwhile, I knew my (ex?) fiancé wanted to explore sleeping with other people and I did try to have the conversation about how to make it safe for me. Obviously it was never going to be because he was dishonest and had disrespected me and been unethical. Also he never responded to my many efforts to open up a conversation around it, the most serious of which all happened after most of the cheating. Now he says he still needs an open relationship, and he seems to not want reconsidering that to be open-ended. We are living separately and in couples counseling; I’ve told some friends and family but my parents still think I’m engaged. Also, I’m about to be 37, and we were off birth control when he told me and in theory moving on to being open to having kids. I certainly can’t see opening anything up unless I feel radically safe and heard and prioritized which I never have been, and what’s way more important to me is having a secure foundation for being parents. I in theory can be down with sexual exploration but in all honesty it’s just not a priority. (I should also say that in our relationship I had the higher sex drive for years before lowering my expectations, and I almost never said no and I believe when he tells me I gave him the best sex of his life).
Obviously I loved him and wanted to be with him before I knew; when I found out I could clearly see the behaviors I had been ignoring and looking past and could kick myself for tolerating it, and him for letting me go down this path with someone who was being dishonest. I honestly don’t know if I can forgive the laundry list of betrayals, which still make me mighty mad.
Can I forgive him and also deal with his sleeping with other people in future under some theoretical framework that I question he could honor? Even less unsure! I guess I’m just looking for an outside opinion on what to do. He confessed out of guilt and has been willing to apologize and work on things, though some projection and resentment have popped up from him along the way that haven’t helped. He fundamentally shuts down when I need support a lot of the time, so maybe I just can’t at all be with him despite the other times together he made me happy. It sucks and I kind of can’t believe I have to deal with something this egregious again (but like, more so).
Heart Needs a Second Chance?
Doctor’s Note: today’s letter includes discussions and descriptions of emotional and verbal abuse.
I’m not sure if this is the kind of question to take on, because it’s not about me specifically, but about my brother (30) and his girlfriend (29). They’ve been in a relationship for about five years and to be blunt about it, my brother is a horrible person. I really like his GF, she’s cute and funny and a great cook. But my brother’s relationship with her is terrible, he clearly has no feelings for her, and instead only wants somebody to bully / cook and clean for him / have sex with.
One of the most concerning things that has happened recently was a short (2-3 day) breakup due to the fact she is putting on weight. I think it is important to state up front that my brother is a weightlifter / bodybuilder and he works hard and is very vain about his own looks. He boasts about how easy it is for him to up or down his weight at will. The girlfriend is not incredibly overweight, maybe a little chubby and she dresses well and always looks cute. Not long after his break-up, get-back-together routine, we spent a weekend together soon after at my mother’s house and I couldn’t stand watching the way he was controlling her life in relation to her weight. We all went out for a coffee and it was brought out with a cookie on the saucer. He took it away from her and gave it to somebody else. Whenever we went out to eat, he dictates what she orders, and throughout the trip he forced her to go on walks. A few years ago a mutual friend of ours had bariatric surgery and for dinner they’d only eat a can of tuna. He once told her to start eating a single can of tuna for dinner too, stating “If they can do it, why can’t you?”
Another thing which was concerning during the trip was the constant negging. If me and my mother complemented her, he’d tell us (in front of her) not to, so we don’t give her an ego. If something ever went wrong (he didn’t pack a jacket for the trip) he’d blame her (even though he’s working at home and she’s working onsite). He’d constantly be ridiculing her and putting her down – it was an incredibly difficult thing to watch.
Not long ago, I looked after his cat and he said that his GF would cook me something to thank me. I told her that ‘despite what he says, that wasn’t necessary’. But she went and snitched on me, and I got a message from him that said something like “She’ll do what I tell her to do.”
I honestly don’t know what to do. I’m afraid that if I approach her again about it, I’ll get a similar result as last time, and I may end up burning my relationship with him. But they’re starting to talk about marriage and to be frank – she deserves better. How do you think I should approach this?