So, Um, Dave... #2: My Girlfriend Has Lost Interest in Sex

Name: Alex G.
Sex/Gender: Male
Subject: My Girlfriend Has Lost Interest in Sex
Message: Hey guys, pretty sure this post has been seen many times on this blog, but I'm looking for answers from people. As mentioned in the subject line, my girlfriend has lost interest in sex recently, I don't think we have had sex in a month or so. Which makes sense because she has been getting more stress from work. However, this has been going on before work started stressing her out.

This feels crappy for both of us for obvious reasons. She has been raised Mormon, but hasn't gone to church in a long time and has identified as agnostic to me.

I just need to know if you guys have run into problems like this in your current or past relationships and what you've done to solve, or, at the very least, alleviate it.
Location: United States
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Thanks for the letter, Alex G. 

You mentioned that you haven't had sex for a while; first mentioning the stresses from work, but then indicated that it actually started before that point. Stress can definitely cause someone to lose some interest in sex, or lose some of their sex drive. I don't know for sure that they'd lose it entirely, though. I did a little bit of research online and found that nearly one-third of women aged 18 to 59 suffer from a loss of interest in sex, so it would seem that you two are not alone. 

So, the work stresses can be playing a role, but since this started before that, let's assume that's not the sole cause. Some other things which can play a role in low sex drive are relationship troubles, medications, low testosterone (yes, even in women), and other medical problems. So, let's start with the relationship...

How is your relationship? Are you otherwise affectionate and intimate? Do you still show that you love one another or does she seem distant? Are the two of you communicative? Was there an unresolved argument, perhaps, which maybe she said, "Fine! Never mind!" to, when she really wasn't all that fine with? If everything seems groovy between the two of you, aside from the sex aspect, then perhaps that's not the issue. 

Some medications can cause a low sex drive. Antidepressants, of course, are often the cause. Additionally, blood pressure medications, and oral contraceptives can contribute to a low sex drive. If you suspect any of these might be the cause, she can see her doctor and perhaps have her medications altered accordingly. 

Low testosterone is going to be an unlikely cause in your case, unless your girlfriend is getting a bit older, but that is one potential cause of low sex drives in both men and women. Generally, younger folk aren't at much risk of this being an issue. 

Additionally, there are some medical conditions such as endometriosis, fibroids, and thyroid disorders, which can impact a woman's sexual drive both mentally and physically, at least according to what I'm finding online. I don't really know much about these conditions, so I can't tell you how common they are, or in what way they might affect things. 

Now, the more awkward part to address is to ask if there might be some role you're playing in causing her lack of desire. Has your personal hygiene been slipping? Have you been extra grumpy lately? Showing her contempt or sarcasm? Resentment? Silent treatment? Do you make her feel desired as more than just a cum receptacle? Do you show her how much you appreciate her? If there's some chance that she's not feeling appreciated, or if your relationship is slipping somehow, you'll see it partly in a lack of desire for intimacy. 

Also, keep in mind that, if by some chance you showed a lot of frustration over her lack of desire to have sex back when this first started, and you showed a lot of resentment, you'll create a sort of feedback loop, in which you'll be bringing it on yourself, and only making it worse. If she feels your resentment, she's not going to want to have sex with you. You know?

So, what's the solution? Communication. You'll need to talk about it, without pointing any fingers. This isn't a her problem. This is an us problem. Well, not "us" including me. I'm totally not involved in this, but, you know, you get my meaning. You don't want to make her feel like this is all her fault. You want to be supportive and help her out to find a solution, if there is one. And be prepared for the fact that there might not be a solution. So, talk it out. Make sure that she feels safe to let you know if there's anything that you are doing, or have done that's made her feel anything other than fully appreciated. If she tells you something, don't get defensive. Just accept it, and work on it. Look into the medical aspects that I mentioned. Don't be afraid to talk to a doctor about sex drives. They hear that shit all the time. If you're not comfortable talking to your own doctor about that, well, pardon the tough love here, but get comfortable, or get a new doctor. You need to be able to talk to your doctor about everything.

Oh, wait... one last really awkward thing, but I'd be remiss if I didn't mention it, though you're both going to hate me for doing so. One reason for lack of sex drive can be infidelity. If she's getting laid elsewhere, she won't be in the mood to get it with you. Hopefully that's not the case, but I had to at least mention it. 

I do wish you luck, and hope for the best. If you have any updates later, be sure and comment below.