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My Husband Constantly Criticizes Our Sex Life

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From a woman in the U.S.:  My husband and I have been together for seven years, married for less than a year, with a toddler. His past relationships have been non-traditional, in that he was in an open marriage, engaged in group sex/threesomes, was constantly at strip clubs, etc. Upon us getting together, I immediately made it clear that I did not share the same kinks and would not be in a relationship with someone who engaged in these activities (without me- I am happy to visit a strip club with him once in awhile to shake things up). He then pursued me, knowingly.

Over the years he has broken my trust repeatedly, soliciting inappropriate photos from his ex-wife (while I was sitting on the couch), keeping these photos even though I made it clear that I was not okay with him keeping photos of his past exploits, lying about his whereabouts while on business trips, making inappropriate/awful comments about his sexual ideals with friends- but he has also gotten significantly better in recent years. I have worked through his past indiscretions, and we have a small child together now, and again the sexual issues have come up.

I am not necessarily sexually conservative, but I am not interested in threesomes or swingers clubs, etc. We still have sex 1-2 times per week, and I try by putting on lingerie, sending racy photos, or trying new positions, toys, etc., but it seems that this is not exciting enough. Any time I have an issue with something, he immediately turns the argument against me, and tells me that I am controlling, and he’s changed enough, but I haven’t. It’s a recurring pattern, I bring up an issue in the relationship, and instead of addressing the problem, he turns the tables and somehow I am at fault, and we end up at sex, and how I haven’t tried to change for him.

My sex drive runs on an emotional connection (which we are lacking, as he has probably apologized to me once in the seven years we’ve been together, and he rarely acknowledges me or praises me), and he is looking for more physical/sexual aspects of the relationship. We’re equals, run a business together, have a child, but I am wondering if our sexual incompatibility will be fatal. I try as much as I can, but I also can’t be told repeatedly that it’s not enough.

My Husband Constantly Criticizes Our Sex Life

Answered by on -


If the sexual incompatibility isn’t fatal, the lack of emotional connection and disrespect from your husband will be. There must be something very compelling that you didn’t share for you to have married and had a child with this man despite such a long history of verbal abuse. I don’t know if what seemed to make it okay were positive things about him or insecurities/fears on your side — or both. But whatever it was seems to be wearing thin.

Please take a clear look at what keeps you in this. In my opinion, without trust, you don’t have much of a relationship. If that’s the case, it isn’t healthy for you and it isn’t healthy for a child to grow up in a home where his father treats his mother so poorly.  Again, that’s a general opinion. There may be things about your relationship that you didn’t share that make a difference.

I do think you two can’t solve your differences on your own. You’ve tried for 7 years without results. I urge you to see a couples therapist to help you look at alternatives. If your husband won’t go, go yourself. You need an objective person who can hear your whole story to help you make some important decisions about your future.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

My Husband Constantly Criticizes Our Sex Life

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2020). My Husband Constantly Criticizes Our Sex Life. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 26, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 29 Jan 2020 (Originally: 31 Jan 2020)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 29 Jan 2020
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