Help for Wives With a Low Sex Drive

It can be quite distressing to have a low sex drive

Serious couple talking in cafe
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It is not unusual for a heterosexual couple to have a disparity in their sex drives. Sometimes, this can cause conflict between them or feel distressing to the one with the lower drive. As most people are aware, the one with the lower libido is most likely the wife. 

Women's sexuality is more complicated than men's. Science backs this up. One of strongest factors impacting a woman's drive is the quality of ​here relationship and emotional connection to her sexual partner.

Furthermore, medical interventions for those seeking such help have not been as successful as it has been with men's sexuality. 

There is debate as to whether or not a woman's sex drive should be viewed as a disorder. According to the DSM-5, it would have to rise to the level of causing her significant distress due to recurrently deficient (or absent) sexual fantasies and desire for sexual activity.

Low libido can be both a cause or result of marital distress. If it is not addressed, this, as well as other female sexual dysfunctions, can destroy a marriage. You owe it to yourself and to your husband to see your doctor or a sex therapist to see what could be causing your lack of interest in sex. This is a situation where communication between spouses is critical. It's imperative that you both talk about it with one another. It is also critical to have a supportive partner when getting help for these problems.


Sexual Dysfunction Definitions

  • Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder (HSDD) - lack of interest in sex, low libido 
  • Dyspareunia - painful sexual intercourse
  • Anorgasmia - inability to reach orgasm
  • Difficulty in becoming aroused

Possible Causes of Low Sexual Desire in Wives

  • Diminished blood flow to the vagina and uterus
  • Childbirth
  • Surgery impacting body image or damaging the body
  • Physical pain
  • Diabetes
  • Anger
  • Marriage problems and unresolved relationship issues
  • Use of illegal substances
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Injury to nerves and blood vessels after a hysterectomy
  • Hormone deficiency or hormonal fluctuations
  • Low levels of testosterone
  • High level of stress
  • Fatigue
  • Desire to punish or control husband
  • Conflict concerning sexual orientation
  • Endocrine or neurological disorders
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Power issues in marriage
  • Emotional problems
  • Childhood sexual abuse
  • Depression and anxiety disorders
  • Antidepressants and other medications
  • Incontinence
  • Infidelity
  • Chronic pain
  • Arthritis
  • Anemia
  • Menopause

Available Treatments

  • Eros-CD, a nonsurgical device
  • Testosterone cream
  • Vaginal lubricants
  • Estrogen patch or pills
  • Stress Reduction
  • Behavioral therapy
  • Altering bad habits
  • Marriage counseling
  • Individual therapy
  • Better communication with spouse
  • Weight loss
  • Exercise
  • Natural remedies like chocolate
  • O-Shot (R)
  • Addyi (prescription drug)
  • Hypnosis
  • Alternative medicine

You don't want to let this problem go on and on and not address it. See out the help of a trusted professional, such as your OB/GYN, general physician or a psychotherapist to start the process of getting help.

You will most likely be referred to another specialist. An individualized treatment plan can be developed to address your particular needs and circumstances. 

Helpful Questions to Ask Your Healthcare Provider

  • What may be some of the causes of my low sex drive?
  • What can I expect in terms of treatment success?
  • What changes can I make on my own to improve my sex drive?
  • Which treatments would be most helpful for me?
  • Are there books or websites that you can you recommend on this issue?

If you are a woman and have a low sex drive that is causing friction in your marriage, there may not an easy cure or treatment. However, once the underlying cause can be discovered, you can move toward finding the best treatment options available.  

*Article updated by Marni Feuerman

Please remember, that this site is for informational purposes only.

Please seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with your questions regarding a medical or psychological condition.