Obstacles Which Get in the Way of a Healthy Sex Life

According to the global Durex Sexual Wellbeing Survey 2007/2008, only 38% of us are satisfied with the amount of sex we are having. For most of the others, our relationship satisfaction will likely feel compromised by a limited sex life.
So if so many of us would prefer to have more sex with our partners, why aren’t we? What’s stopping us?
[sectiontitle1]Too busy and too tired[/sectiontitle1]
With so many pressures in our everyday lives, being too tired is a common excuse for a limited sex life. Many of us work in busy and often stressful jobs, and commonly take work home with us at the end of the day. This can mean that the working day becomes incredibly long and at times seems endless. Then there is dinner to prepare, a house to clean and the kids need help with their homework. For many of us, our time is constrained and we often feel exhausted at the end of the day. In these circumstances, there is no surprise that our sex life may not be getting the attention it deserves.
[sectiontitle1]Communication Barriers[/sectiontitle1]
Good communication is an essential factor in any good relationship. But many couples don’t know how to talk openly and honestly with each other. Communication barriers are problematic for two reasons. First, a lack of communication reduces a sense of intimacy in the relationship and reduces the desirability for sexual encounters. Second and most importantly, you are unable to properly discuss your sexual relationship with your partner. You will find it difficult to disclose your expectations and needs with regard to sex, which may further stagnate your sexual relationship.
[sectiontitle1]New Baby[/sectiontitle1]
Some couples find that when children come along, there is just too much going on to think about sex. It is extremely common for parents to sacrifice sexual intimacy due to these new family commitments. For many people, this new situation takes time to adjust to. It’s difficult to feel romantic when you have been up all night with a baby!
[sectiontitle1]Libido Fluctuations[/sectiontitle1]
Libido (sexual desire) is affected by biological, psychological, and social factors. Factors such as: paying attention to healthy eating habits, getting regular exercise, and adopting a regular sleeping pattern are all important for a healthy libido. Other things which can affect your libido include fluctuations in your hormone levels, endocrine issues, the side-effects of certain medications, extreme weight loss, stress ad other psychological factors.
It is natural for a libido to have fluctuations throughout life and therefore low libido can sometimes be a temporary setback caused by age or hormone changes which will eventually resolve and re-stabilise the libido. Of course, people who experience low libido for a long period should seek medical advice to determine the cause.
[sectiontitle1]Making Change[/sectiontitle1]
If you feel that some or all of these factors are influencing your sex life, then you can make changes to improve things.

  • Put aside dedicated time for your partner – do something romantic to encourage intimacy
  • Go to bed a bit earlier on certain times so that you are not too tired to have sex
  • Go to bed naked to encourage sexual arousal and intimacy
  • Jump in the sack – even if you don’t feel like it.
  • Make an appointment with a relationship counsellor or sex therapist so you can work on your communication skills and enhance your intimacy.


  1. Bradbury, T.N., Fincham, F.D., & Beach, S.R.H. (2000). Research on the nature and determinants of marital satisfaction: A decade in review. Journal of Marriage and the Family, 62
    (4), 964–980. doi:10.1111/j.1741-3737.2000.00964.x.
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