Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I Don't Want Him - But Who DO I Want?

Dr. Kate,

I have only been with one partner, and I've never been abused. My partner is attentive and committed, equally inexperienced but enthusiastically willing to try anything I'm interested in.
Here's the problem: although I started out with very normal desires and expectations, things have really gone south over the course of our three-year relationship, and not in a good way. As far as I can tell, I'm the problem. I hate kissing, especially tongue kissing. I do not enjoy foreplay, although we've read countless books and articles and tried so many different things. I hate cunnilingus; it makes me feel nauseated. I think lingerie is dumb-looking and I feel stupid wearing it, although the idea of him dressing up for me is somewhat appealing. I can climax very easily on my own, but my partner hasn't been able to get me there once. I also don't enjoy cuddling after we have sex. It's the weirdest thing - here is he wanting to linger in the afterglow and share intimate secrets, and I'm the one wanting to roll over and go to sleep. I have a good sex drive and I'm not insecure about my appearance, but for some reason none of the activities we've tried did a thing for me. I always come away frustrated. I'm starting to worry that maybe I'm not straight...I'm from a very religious background and never had the chance to experiment with anything. I don't want to end this relationship because we work together so well on other levels...but I am getting so fed up with our sex life. Any thoughts?


Dear Frustrated,

You're not the problem. Likely neither is he - it may be in the pairing of the two of you. A question: do you ever feel aroused when you're with him? Does a look or a touch from him ever make you tingle or feel turned on or make you want to grab him? If not, it doesn't sound like you're attracted to him. Attraction is different for everyone, but generally leads to some physical feeling in you...if you don't want to kiss him, you simply don't want him.

You say that your sex drive is good - what gets you in gear? Do you get that physical rush from any man? One you know, or one you look at from afar (or even a celebrity)? Is there any fella that you would want to kiss? If not, it's very possible that you're not straight. Have you ever let yourself even think about being with a woman? How do you feel, just thinking about kissing a woman? Give yourself some time to explore thoughts like these. There are many resources out there for you - many are geared towards teens (and you haven't told me your age), but are still really good.

You might want to consider a psychologist or therapist to be able to confidentially talk out how you're feeling. I hope you can at least find a friend to talk to - it's not going to be easy, these next steps. But you're brave to take them - we all deserve to feel physically good with our partner. Your boyfriend sounds wonderful, but he doesn't sound like what you want.

Best of health,
Dr. Kate

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