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So, What If You're Not Attracted To Your Husband Anymore?

"You don't marry one person; you marry three: the person you think they are, the person they are, and the person they are going to become as the result of being."—Richard J. Needham

Marriage

Even after all of these years of being a marriage life coach, if there's a consistent thread that I've experienced with my clients, one that always tends to fascinate me, it's how so often there can be two people who started out being totally into each other; then, life gets in the way and the very same things that caused a husband and wife to not be able to keep their hands off of one another are now some of the very things that cause them to go a couple of months without having sex, without even blinking an eye. What's the deal? Like, really?

From a research standpoint, it's interesting what causes people to be attracted to one another in the first place—looks (of course), a good sense of humor, a person's level of ambition and even relatable past experiences. However, when I read an article on Insider's site entitled, "Why you're attracted to certain people, and not others", a takeaway that tickled me was, "When it comes to love, most people have an idea of what they're looking for in a partner".

Singles, this is actually a part of the reason why I wrote the article for this platform, "The Pros & Cons Of Creating A 'What I Want In A Man' Checklist". It's because the reality is, a lot of people get into relationships simply because a person is pleasing to the eye or makes them feel some type of way, yet they don't really make the time to ponder if they are truly attracted to them in a broader sense. You know, if the person shares their same values, if they complement their lifestyle, if they are on the same page when it comes to spiritual and sexual compatibility…things like that. And when you don't take those types of things into long and serious account before jumping the broom, it can be real easy to "fall out of attraction" once bills, arguments, unattractive habits and even time changing the two of you transpires.

So, what do you do when you're married and, while you still love your husband, you are in a space where you don't really feel all that attracted to him? That's a good question. Personally, I'm a fan of more questions being asked in order to get to the right answer(s). Are you ready to do a little soul-seeking?

Do You Feel Emotionally Disconnected Somehow?

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While it might seem odd that most of us are attracted to someone, out the gate, by how they look, I actually want to start this off by inquiring about how you feel about your man emotionally right now. It's no secret that if a lot of women do not feel emotionally in sync with their partner, his looks really aren't going to matter much. Not only that, but a classic dictionary definition of attract is "to draw by appealing to the emotions or senses, by stimulating interest, or by exciting admiration; allure; invite".

When I wrote the article, "This Is How To Feel Emotionally Safe In Your Relationship" and also "10 Things Marriages Need On A Daily Basis", it was partly to confirm the fact that our feelings matter. One example is the last man who broke my heart. We've managed to remain friends (long story and another article for another time) yet it's interesting. He looks just like he did when we were "in our situation" and so, from a physical standpoint, I still think he's cute, I'm not drawn to him in the least. It's because my feelings towards him have changed. I don't trust him in the same way. I don't share with him all of what I used to. I don't respect certain things about how he handled our dynamic. So yeah, we're healing yet there is definitely an emotional disconnect.

So, I would start there. If you're not really into your husband right now, take a moment to think about how he makes you feel. If you can't use words like "good", "safe" and "confident in the relationship", then there is an emotional disconnection somewhere. Either talking it out or seeing a therapist/counselor/life coach can typically help you to figure out how to get your connection back again.

Have You Lost Respect for Him on Some Level?

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If you've been reading my copy for a while now, you know that I'm good for bringing the Bible into an article, as I think it applies. Well, for this particular point, Scripture certainly applies. The Classic Amplified Version of Ephesians 5:33 says, "However, let each man of you [without exception] love his wife as [being in a sense] his very own self; and let the wife see that she respects and reverences her husband [that she notices him, regards him, honors him, prefers him, venerates, and esteems him; and [that she defers to him, praises him, and loves and admires him exceedingly]." Some of y'all might not like this very much but hey, I didn't make it up. It's what the Word says. And here's the thing. Just like love languages are all about expressing love in the way that your partner needs to feel it (not the way you do), according to Scripture, women feel loved with love while men feel loved when they are respected. On that last point, you know what else? We are able to love a man more when we respect him too (well look at that!).

I've got a friend right now who's been struggling in her marriage because her husband is the consummate mama's boy. Back when they were dating, she thought it was endearing because it appeared nurturing and gentlemanly. Now that she's realized that she's basically in second place—with his mama always coming in first—she's pretty disgusted (and that's putting it mildly).

If there are three things that most wives expect from their husband, it's him having the ability to protect, provide (not just or only financially but holistically so) and cherish her. When any of those things are lacking, it's hard to do what the Word says—regard, prefer or esteem her husband.

My friend's husband isn't protecting, providing or cherishing his wife like he should because either his mama's needs come first or he doesn't serve as a barrier between his mom and his wife when his mom tries to take jabs. And how can you wanna be close to a man who you don't feel is acting like one?

Protect. Provide. Cherish. If you're struggling with being attracted to your man right now, ask yourself if you feel like he's failing—or flailing—in any of these areas. If he is, that at least can give you a starting point of what you need to share with him—and why.

Is Your Lack of Attraction Physical—or Sexual?

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I'm gonna share a double standard that drives me totally up the wall. How is it that when a woman gains weight in a marriage and her husband struggles with remaining physical or sexually attracted to her, he's the ultimate jerk? Oh, but when a man grows a gut and his wife turns up her nose, suddenly the mockery is justified. One of the biggest lessons that marriage teaches you is how to apply the Golden Rule—do unto others as you would have them do until you—on the daily.

That said, let's not act like attraction doesn't also mean "to draw by a physical force causing or tending to cause to approach, adhere, or unite; pull (opposed to repel)". Yeah, something that's unfortunate when it comes to many marriages is, once two people say "I do", one or both can get a little lazy (idle, sluggish) on the physical appearance front. I honestly can't tell you how many people have said to me, "I've got him now, why do I need to go through all of that effort for?" Umm, because your husband didn't suddenly go blind on his wedding day and also, what about you wanting to look bomb for yourself? Geeze.

And let me bring something up about the lack of sexual attraction too. Someone else in my world has been having issues in her marriage for years because the way she views sex—how she wants to have it, when she wants to have it and even why she wants to have it—have evolved over the years. Meanwhile, her husband has remained pretty "sexually stagnant" in a lot of ways because, in his mind, so long as he's got BDE (check out "BDE: Please Let The 'It Needs To Be Huge' Myth Go") and a high sex drive, it should be all good, right? Wrong, sir.

Back when I wrote the article, "8 'Kinds of Sex' All Married Couples Should Put Into Rotation", a part of my motivation was to shout-out the fact that marriage comes with a different level of responsibility than "single sex" does. That's because sex isn't to be treated like a "perk" in marriage; it is actually a key and core ingredient in making a committed relationship last (check out "10 Wonderful Reasons Why Consistent Sex In Marriage Is So Important").

This is why it's important to make sure that you go beyond just the "mechanics" of sex when it comes to your partner. Are you both on the same page sexually? Do you have similar needs and expectations? As you both grow and evolve, do you view sex in a different way? Have your changes in hormones or even body image caused you to want different things?

A lot of marriages are struggling out here because sexual attraction has died down and unfortunately, rather than dealing with the issue, they settle for not having sex at all. I say it often and I mean every word—if you are physically able to have sex with your spouse and you're not doing it, your marriage is showing signs of being unhealthy. If you fall into this category, please check out "9 Sex-Related Questions You & Your Partner Should Ask Each Other. Tonight.", then consider having that chat with your partner tonight. You deserve all that comes with marriage—including being physically and sexually attracted to your hubby. Still.

Did You Go into Marriage with an Unrealistic Attraction Expectation?

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Marriage is a mirror. I'm a firm believer of that as well. "Mirror" in the sense that it will show you some things about yourself in a way that no other relationship on this planet ever can or ever will. Well, if after pondering all of the things that I've already said, if you don't feel like any of those points apply but you're still like, "Yeah…I'm still not attracted right now, though", ask yourself what your expectations were going in.

Something else that I also oftentimes hear a lot in my sessions is people saying, "I had no idea that marriage was going to be this challenging" or "Somehow, I thought that marriage was going to be a lot easier than this". Make no mistake, choosing the right person makes the relationship a billion times less stressful yet what relationship is always a walk in the park? Shoot, even our relationship with ourselves can wear us out from time to time.

Reflecting on what you expected marriage to be vs. what it is currently like for you can also help you to get to the root of why you're not attracted to your husband at the present.

I mean, if you expected him to be some character out of your favorite movie, you're gonna be disappointed. Or, if you thought that marriage was gonna be just about you and what you want all of the time, you're gonna be pissed. Or, if you're realizing that you are far more selfish because you never considered that marriage was about daily—and I do mean, daily—compromise, you're gonna feel shortchanged. Expectations aren't bad yet it's important to have ones that are realistic. Were yours?

It’s Important to Remember That You Can Oftentimes Get Back to Where You Once Were

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I know we just covered a lot of ground yet here's the really good news about all of it—if you were once attracted to your husband, there is a really good chance that you can get back to being attracted again. Because, as you just saw, attraction isn't just some random fleeting notion; once you figure out what attracts you to someone and what has caused you to not be attracted, you can get to the root of the matter and restore what was lost.

I honestly can't tell you, just how many times I have been able to help a couple get, as India.Arie once put it, "Back to the Middle", once they were completely open and honest with each other about what they need in the present and their partner was open to helping to meet them where they are.

Attraction isn't just important in a marriage; it is very necessary. Just remember that attraction is what got you to the "for better or for worse" place in your relationship. It's not impossible to feel that way again. If both of you want it, you can have it. You really can.

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
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