What can you do if your partner won’t agree to sex therapy?
- Talk it out. Is it anxiety? Is it embarrassment? Getting everything out in the open will help both of you figure out your next steps.
- Learn about the benefits of sex therapy together. Sex therapy might seem intimidating or just something that your partner has never considered before. Learning about the benefits together can segway into a discussion on what you both hope to achieve in therapy together.
- Attend sex therapy online or over the phone. Sometimes it is easiest to be the most open, or best apply what you learn in therapy, when sex therapy happens from the comfort of your home. This is another way to circumvent scheduling and travel challenges that make it hard to schedule an appointment.
- Start going by yourself. You won’t regret the gains you make in sex therapy, and you will be able to apply what you learn to your relationship. Your partner may see your progress and be inspired to get started to see what you can accomplish together.
I have had many phone consultations with women and men who know they (and their partner) need sex therapy, but their partners will not agree to come in for a session.
Unfortunately, I hear this often. Sometimes the partner won’t come in because they feel that the problem belongs to their spouse. Other times, it is because they feel embarrassed and ashamed. Sometimes it is because they just don’t take their partner’s concerns seriously. Finally, some won’t come in because they don’t understand how therapy could help or have given up hope that things will ever change sexually.
If your partner won’t agree to sex therapy, clear the air
Regardless of the reason behind the refusal, it is important to talk directly to your partner about how crucial this is to you, and to your relationship.
Try something like:
“I know our sex life is not what we both want it to be. I believe it can improve if we are willing to work on it. I talked with a sex therapist today by phone, and read her web sites, and I think she can help us. Would you be willing to talk to her by phone to ask questions about how she could work with us? Would you be willing to visit her web sites? It is really important to me that you give this some serious thought. We both know that this problem has been going on for years, and isn’t going to get better unless we do something. It is hurting our relationship. I don’t want to let that continue.”
You can read this article about sex therapy together with your partner. It may open the discussion about what each of you would hope to achieve in therapy. Your partner may be surprised to find that their expectations differ from what they will actually experience in sex therapy. Many people find the benefits of sex therapy balance any anxiety they have about opening up in therapy.
You can make big changes in therapy by yourself
If your partner still won’t participate, come in solo. Begin to work on your part of the picture. As you make changes, your partner may get interested in what is happening, or start to feel there is hope. They may change their mind about being in sex therapy.
It doesn’t matter if the problem is his or hers. Any sexual problem ultimately becomes a couple’s problem.
Call today for a free sex therapy consultation for yourself alone or yourself and your partner, or just fill out the contact form and click Send. Phone appointments are available for your convenience and comfort.
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