No romance


No romance


your avatar   Noaj, 60-year-old woman

We've been partners for 23 years. In the past, out sex life was great, but now my husband cannot maintain an erection. I am never satisfied during sex therefore I avoid it. My husband has gotten Viagra but he seems to leave it up to me as to when he should take it. There is no romance in that plan!

What can we do as a couple to enhance our sex lives?


    Robert W. Birch, Ph.D., ACS Certified Sexologist

On the list of sexual changes that happen with aging men is a narrowing of the arteries that carry blood into the penis, and without that blood, the man has trouble getting and keeping an erection. One of the other things that happens to the aging male is the decrease in the amount of testosterone being produced and this results in a decrease in sexual desire. Your husband just does not have the same level of sexual drive that he once had and apparently has never learned to play just for the fun of playing.

The reality is that you will probably have to continue to initiate, for your husband is just not going to think about it. It's not that he loves you less... he's just lost his drive. Viagra will work to help him get erections, but I understand what you are saying. If he becomes mechanical, the value of the sexual intimacy is lost.

Talk with him about what might be fun to try. You will have to try to capture his attention with the prospect of something new. Challenge him to be creative. I would also suggest that you emphasize a lot of nonsexual touch so that there are times when they two of you interact physically without your husband feeling the pressure to perform. It sounds as though both of you are backing off, and once that happens, it is hard to reconnect. Start with what is safe for him... talk and nonsexual touch.

It is wonderful that you are still a sensual woman, and I am sure there is a part of your husband that mourns the loss of his own passion and easy arousal. If you cannot get things started alone, seek the help of a qualified sex therapist. It's not time to quit, so build a fire under that guy and don't give up... even though you might feel you are putting in most of the effort.

Robert W. Birch, Ph.D., is a retired sex therapist, now identifying himself as a sexologist and adult sexuality educator. He now devotes his time to writing educational and self-help books for adults.For more information visit:

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