I have been married for 2 1/2 years. I love my husband very much; however I don’t like having sex with him. I like sex and think about it all the time. When my husband and I are apart, I fantasize about things we can try but, as soon as he comes around, I don’t want to anymore. When he tries to touch me I push his hands away. He feels as though I want someone else and that is not true.
To give you a little history, I have Adult ADD. I am not currently treating my illness. I am in college and feel that I will never finish because I get bored with my studies after the first few weeks. I get frustrated and can’t concentrate on the task at hand. I have an appt. scheduled to see a dr. I am determined to finish school, however I am about to quit because I feel as if I a wasting money and spinning my wheels.
To get back into the problem at hand, I have experienced this with someone else that I was very much in love with. I left the relationship because I thought I didn’t love him as much as I thought I did. I wouldn’t even kiss him, just peck…I am the same way with my husband. There must be something wrong. I have had sex with others and there was never a problem with intimacy. However, they were not committed relationships.
Is there something wrong with me that when ever I completely open up to a person, in a serious relationship, sexually its closed. But, when a relationship is new or not very serious I have sex however, whenever. It’s almost like in my head they are completely different things…like sex and kissing is casual and my love and things on that nature are very intimate. Does this make sense?
I thought maybe it was a security thing because, my husband lost his job (career) and has been job hopping every since. I am carrying most of the financial load and he doesn’t seem to care. But, in thinking, I realize that can not be it because my ex took care of me just as my father did and I felt the same with him. I want the closeness that intimacy with my husband will bring as well as children. Do you have any advice? What is my problem?

A: Let’s deal with the different issues one at a time. First, the ADD and school: I’m glad you are seeing a doctor for recommendations. It may be that some medication will help you focus. However, it’s a mistake to depend entirely on medicine. Most colleges now have a learning center with specialists available to help people with learning differences (and ADD is one of them) learn strategies for managing school work. Take advantage of what your school has to offer. If the school doesn’t have such services, see if you can find an academic coach who is in business privately. Can’t afford that? Then search the web and your local bookstore for articles and books that will give you ideas for how to structure your life so you can be successful. There is no shame in having ADD. You were born with it. There is shame in not doing what you can to manage it. If you were limping, you would find out why and put supports in place to help you get around. The same is true with learning differences.
Now for the sex part: Your analysis makes complete sense. For some reason, you’ve separated intimacy and sex as a way to protect yourself. The question is, “protect yourself from what?”. In the current situation, it may be that you are more angry with your husband than you want to admit. You may believe that letting yourself feel your feelings will put your marriage more at risk. It may be true. The answer to the recrrance of this as a way to manage feelings and relationships probably lies in your own history. If you want to get to the bottom of it, you should seek out a therapist. I hope you do. It sounds like you have a marriage that is going through a rough spot but that is worth saving.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 1 Jan 2008

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2008). Loves her husband, doesn’t like to be touched.. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 29, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/01/01/loves-her-husband-doesnt-like-to-be-touched/