Red Responds: He Doesn’t Know How to Please Her

Cheryl in Sioux Falls writes:

I am eight months newly married to a man who would rather please himself than be with me. I’ve tried to discuss the issue with him but he is very defensive about the subject. He was in a bad marriage for 30 years upon marrying me. He is not up to date on the new ways of foreplay or knowing how to please a woman sexually.

We are not compatible in the sex department. I’ve tried to explain to him what excites me and he doesn’t take heed to it… he is from the old school of sex as I’m of the new school. I am 45 years of age and he is 53, could that be a part of the problem? I don’t understand why he chooses to please himself if he has a wife that is a willing participant in sex.

Dear Cheryl,

I know you believed that marriage would help improve your sex life, but unfortunately, that isn’t the case. I wish I could tell you that things were going to heat up, that your sex life was going to blossom and transform, but your husband just doesn’t seem to be built that way.

Some people, both men and women, prefer masturbation to sex. You happened to have married a man who is of this nature. It’s just how he is. It doesn’t take away from his love for you or his desire to be your husband, it is just that he can, and prefers to meet his needs alone, finding more intense pleasure through this manner than through partnered sex. He is quite set in his ways…

It is understandable that his preference is unnerving, and brings forth much concern and insecurity in you, but you said it: The two of you aren’t sexually compatible.

Even though your husband does love you, he doesn’t understand your needs or feelings when it comes to intimacy. Sexually, he is very stuck in his ways, and any direction you try and give he takes as more of a criticism, and then lets it go. Unfortunately, I don’t see him as willing to loosen up, explore, or participate in therapy with a sex counselor. You do have quite the problem, here.

This is an issue that you can continue to try and work with, coming to some form of agreement that works for you both – but you aren’t likely to uncover the sex partner you desire in him. While it is sad, it is the reality of things. Your willingness really isn’t part of the equation, your husband’s mindset and preferences are what they are. He will never change, so this is something you need to decide if you can accept. While he may more frequently seek you out in the bedroom, in quantity and quality, but you will still be left wanting. You also need to decide if this is something you are willing to sacrifice for the sake of maintaining the relationship. You know what you have, and while there will be some improvements, progress is slow.

If you want to remain in this marriage, you are going to have to work with what you have. While that may mean you need to meet your own physical needs more often than you’d like, you can find other ways to establish feelings of security and intimacy.

Good luck!
Ext. 9226

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