Wise Counsel from Susan Quilliam: He just can’t get enough

Susan, help. My partner of six months has a really, really high sex drive. He likes to have sex three times a night, and though you might think that’s great, it’s actually not. I like sex, don’t get me wrong, but his constant demands are getting me down.

At first his needing sex all the time was flattering, and I wanted it as much as he did. And I thought that over time his libido would level out as it has done with all my previous boyfriends. But even after a year he wants to go again and again, and though he tries to be understanding, it’s obvious he’s really frustrated if we don’t do it that often.

We’ve agreed now at once a night and more at weekends, but that makes me feel really pressured – left to myself I’d only want it once a week. We’re starting to row almost constantly about it – so is there any way we can get round this, or are we doomed?


Hi Marianne

Whether your relationship is doomed or not probably depends on what it’s like outside the bedroom. Because it’s clear that in the bedroom there’s a huge gap between what you want and what your partner wants – a gap so huge that even though you’ve both compromised, neither of you are really happy.

If we were talking about the difference between twice a night and once a night – or twice a week and once a week – then you might be able to find a satisfactory solution. Perhaps you could offer to help your man by hand or mouth – which would be less strenuous for you and would ring the changes for him. Or he could offer to do it himself every now and then – which wouldn’t be the same as love making, but might help dampen his desire.

But the difference between three times a night and once a week is immense, and frankly I don’t think you’re going to be able to solve it sexually. Which means that you both may have to live with it, giving and taking, sometimes with you having much more sex than you ideally want, sometimes with your partner having much less sex than he would like.

You’re only going to be able to do this if the rest of your relationship is worth that sacrifice. If you love each other, support each other, are able to communicate, have common goals, have a real emotional compatibility, then you’re in with a chance. (If that’s the case, then you may well also have the motivation to see a counsellor: log on to www.cosrt.org.uk for a list of local ones.)

But if what’s between you is only mild liking with some lust thrown in, then almost certainly these rows are going to escalate until neither of you is prepared to hang on in there any more. I am so sorry to be the bearer of bad news – but some chasms are just too big to bridge, and sexual incompatibility may well be one of them.


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