Mary Poppins to the Rescue

Can a relationship survive without sex? Many couples will say that it can. Neither partner has much desire for the other and they are both happy to gloss over the glaring fault in what they consider to be a very good and amicable relationship. In the morning they have to rush out the door in the evening they are too tired, during vacation and on weekends, the kids are around there is always a plausible excuse. But what lies beneath? Is it a relationship of convenience? Can it be true that both partners are willing to settle for celibacy at the prime of their lives , or is the truth a bit more complicated?

I can only speak from experience as I don’t know what goes on in the private bedrooms of the nation. In my case after two kids and 22 years of marriage, I simply did not fancy my husband “in this way” and I think that the feeling was mutual. Sure, we talked about it on occasion, cheering each other on with statements along the lines of “we should do this more often”, but the truth is, neither one of us really wanted to. We shared a bed (up until the day he ran off with another woman), but nothing really disturbed our peaceful and restful sleep.

When did it all start? With the arrival of the babies of course. Anyone that tells you that they have a passionate and vibrant sex life with babies screaming in the background is either a bald face liar or has mastered an art unknown to most mere mortals. After the gymnastics that most couples go through to conceive, the trauma of the actual birth and the sleepless nights that follow, there is little energy left for the couple to engage in their pre-babies’ escapades. In my case, the sex pretty much ground to a halt with baby number 2 and I spent many celibate years being a devoted wife and mother. I was quite content to sacrifice sex to the alter of marital faithfulness and stability and I thought he felt the same way. Turns out I couldn’t have been more wrong, and he was not at all happy to continue living a life of celibate sacrifice.

And here is the golden nugget of advice to all of you ladies who are pre-occupied with your brood and are living in Teletubby land. For sex and desire to survive in a long term relationship the partners have to interject some tantalising uncertainty, maintain a high degree of individuality and hire an extremely dependable live in nanny.

If the sex had dried up, your relationship may be on borrowed time. If you are not making an effort (between changing nappies) to smear yourself in whipped cream and run around the house naked, something unfortunate may happen to your relationship. I am not kidding, if your sex life is non-existent, sign up for the Ann Summers mail order catalogue and bring his sleeping libido back to life, before someone else does. You may be a saint, but I can assure you, he is most likely not.

Author of the Dream series for women, I love to help women find happiness.

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