Question: Sometimes I am in the mood and my husband is not. More often than not, I initiate. It makes me feel rejected and not wanted, especially when we hear so much about men wanting sex more than women. What can I do about this difference and how do I feel better about it?
Response: I'm so glad you asked this because it is often overlooked. Very often, women have the higher desire in the relationship. Since it is talked about less, it can contribute to women feeling stigmatized and abnormal. However, it's quite common. Here are some tips to help you deal with the situation:
1) Don't take it personally. Men's libido is very tied into their self-esteem, body image, performance at work, finances, and ability to provide for the family. Your husband may be feeling down about himself, he may be very stressed at work, and he may be feeling inadequate for some reason. Boost your husband's self-esteem by telling him how amazing he is and how much you love him and want him.
2) When you initiate and are successful, give him lots of positive feedback and praise. This will make him more likely to do it again.
3) If you initiate and he turns you down, try to let it go. Just say okay and give him a kiss good night. Don't get into a fight with him at that time or get upset or passive aggressive with him. You could ask him if everything's okay or if he wants to talk, but don't harp on it. It's also not the right time to have a serious conversation about it.
4) Try something different. If you have been getting in a rut and things are getting a bit boring, try something new that might excite him (like new lingere).
5) Touch him affectionately without expecting or asking for sex. Just enjoy the experience and don't get too caught up in who started it.
6) Talk to him and tell him how you feel. He may have no idea that you feel rejected and he may be so wrapped up in whatever's going on with him. This might make him tune in to your feelings and needs.
7) When he does initiate, praise him and say how much you love when he initiates.
8) Understand that no two people have the same desire. Find a way to talk to him about your desire pattern and find a way to meet in the middle with your desires.