It’s no secret that my relationship with John has changed quite a lot since we had Erin. I have spoken about Erin’s horrendous birth and the trouble that came afterwards. I have spoken about the lack of support and having no one around to help in those early days as all of my family live away. I have also spoken about my desperate need to be sterilised and how the NHS has failed me in this desire. All of these things have changed both me and my relationship with John.
Erin is now 21 months old and pretty much since I was pregnant, I haven’t been interested in sex at all. Not even a little bit. I’ve wanted nothing to do with it for getting on for 2 and a half years now. You hear of these women whose sex drives go a bit mad while they’re pregnant but I was the complete opposite. It was actually really strange. Now, it’s just how I feel all the time.
John and I have been married for 4 years now and it’s probably mostly unheard of for young-ish married couples to not have sex. Don’t get me wrong, I still love John as much as I did when we got married, more in fact and I am still very much attracted to him (he may tell you otherwise). I just have absolutely no interest in sex any more. Not only sex, anything intimate. It’s like my sex drive shriveled up and died the minute I got pregnant.
I guess I thought things would get better and that eventually, I’d get back to normal. That didn’t happen though.
Recovering from Erin’s birth took a very long time and in fact, I still get infections most months and I am often in pain because of them. The infections smell, they are red and sore and they make me feel disgusting. I don’t think I could feel any more unattractive than I already do. It’s not very often John ever even sees me naked nowadays.
The thing is, I have been to the doctor to talk about post natal depression. The doctors don’t give a shit. My stomach can only be cured by ‘getting as skinny as possible’ as one doctor put it and my issues with sex and pregnancy can only be cured by John having a vasectomy or me having the coil apparently. The doctors don’t seem to want to listen to why I feel the way that I do. The first time I pretty much got antidepressants thrown at me and shoved out of the door.
John is a saint. I can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that had this happened with any one of my ex boyfriends, we wouldn’t be together now. I guess this is why I married John and not any of them! Obviously, John would love for our relationship to get back to normal, and so would I. I just don’t see it happening. Not only do I not have a sex drive any more, I’m bloody knackered! When do people ever find the time to make more babies?!
Not having a physical relationship is bound to put stresses on any relationship, marriage or not. I am extremely lucky to have a husband who is so understanding and so patient. One day I’m sure our relationship will be the same as it was before Erin but I just can’t see that happening any time soon.
4 thoughts on “Can A Marriage Survive Without Sex?”
I have been where you are. Hyper emersis gravidarum and then awful pelvic pain, made any kind of sex during pregnancy a no go, then a horribly traumatic birth with serious physical and mental side effects meant we didn’t have sex for almost a year birth (I still have scar issues there too, now) and even then it wasn’t often, maybe once every six weeks or so because I felt I should try at least. I was depressed, anxious and also physically damaged and our sex life was almost zero. Fortunately my husband, like yours was very kind and understanding and there was no pressure from him, on me.
GP’s frankly are useless and have no idea what to do or how to help and you have several issues that need dealing with. Your mental health is closely linked to your physical health and you are still struggling with physical issues that are affecting you too.
I went to my health visitor and basically broke down and told her what was going on, and she was amazing. She referred me for mental health help, and also organised for me to see a specialist gynae physio to deal with the sore and scarred areas. I was seen by a gynae as well to make sure I didn’t need more treatment to fix the damage. I had help physically to heal and also some CBT and talk therapy and a proper assesment for medication to help me. It wasn’t an overnight fix but it did eventually all start to get much easier and with help I was able to get to a place where life and sex were part of normal. My self esteem slowly came back and I was able to talk to my husband about how I felt about my body and realise that he still wanted to have sex with me despite the massive changes it had been through.
I am so sorry you are going through this. It’s utter bollocks (sorry, I hope you don’t mind, but I am so angry you are basically being fobbed off by your gp) that you are being left to suffer like this and being brushed off. Birth trauma and mental health issues are not something you just “deal with” and you are totally entitled to get help and support for this.
If you can speak to someone like a health visitor and basically see if they can start to get you help, it can’t hurt to try. I feel for you so much and wish I could actually give you a hug and tell you it will be ok, and that you aren’t alone, and you are entitled to get help to sort out the physical and mental issues around this. It’s not just some meds and a pat on the back!
I wish I could be more help!
Thank you so much for this comment Karen!
I never really thought about going to our health visitor. Erin’s 2 year visit will be coming up soon and that would be a good time to speak to her. I guess I always thought they’re there more for the children rather than us. We’re currently in the process of moving doctor’s surgeries so I’ll be going back to speak to them as well.
It’s hard though because how many times can I get the brush off before I stop trying. Although I’m sorry you have gone through something similar it’s really reassuring to know that there is light at the end and a way to work through things, even if the doctors don’t seem to care! Thank you for being so honest!
Oh this is so sad to read, not what you are feeling (although that is definitely very sad) but how you have been treated. I think millions of mothers feel exactly the same as you, it just isn’t talked about. I remember not wanting to be touched, I was all “touched out”. It took a long time to get back to normal, although I don’t think we ever did get back to how it was before, I was always just too tired! I really hope you get some good medical advice soon xx
Thanks! I know we’ll get somewhere eventually but doesn’t seem like it will be any time soon. Not enough people talk about how they really feel after having a baby and what it can do/ change! x