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Ask a Law Student: No More Sex in New Relationship

Conventional Wisdom is a different kind of advice column. Your questions will be answered by people from all walks of life rather than by advice experts. This week, a law student tries to help out a woman dealing with a lack of intimacy. If you have a question you'd like answered on Conventional Wisdom, you can submit it here.

Today's Question:

I have been dating my boyfriend for five months now and we waited two months before we had sex. We would make out constantly before we had sex and it was exciting and fun. Things began to change a lot after we had sex but so did his life outside our relationship (he hates his job and his ex is trying to get full-custody of their children). So sex has been pretty infrequent now. No more passionate kissing either. He will kiss and cuddle all the time, but we haven't had sex in almost a month. He hasn't stopped calling or inviting me over, but it's starting to become frustrating because I want that intimacy and he is denying me. It doesn't even have to be sex; he won't even tell me how he feels. I am tired of walking on eggshells. I have tried to ask him in many different ways but it always results in him getting mad that I would ask. I don't expect you to tell me what he's thinking, but can you give me an idea for what to do?

Frustrated Frances

To see the law student's answer,


Dear FF,

Being freezed out by a significant other is painful. While I don't doubt your genuine feelings for this man, I think it's pretty clear that he's not meeting your needs for intimacy and emotional security. Luckily you've only invested five months, so now is the time — before it gets any harder — to seriously consider moving on.


Since talking to your partner isn't a real option, I would suggest taking some time apart. You may not be able to control his mood or actions, but you can change yours. Tell him that you notice that he has a lot going on so you want to give him some space to figure things out. Decline his invitations to cuddle for a week and make your own plans.

Once you do reconnect, you should pay attention to how your feelings for him might have changed and whether or not he's making an effort to address the things in his life causing him stress. You could also offer him support in these areas, as it could be more productive than bringing up his lack of intimacy, which is probably a result of the stress.

That being said, it might be best to just walk away. The significant communication issues, not to mention a lack of sex, is a signal that this relationship might not be cut out for the long run. I know it's tough, but it sounds like you know already that you deserve better than this. Good luck.

Join The Conversation
reynolda reynolda 7 years
Law school is pretty easy after the first year, and definitely cake by the third year... leaves us all with some free time :) I also agree with the response... the lack of sex is clearly a problem, but his getting mad whenever she brings it up is probably the bigger issue for this working out.
mix-tape mix-tape 7 years
What law student has the time to write back to these lol? I do agree with the response for the most part though. You've only invested 5 months, it's best to get out while you still have the opportunity. The first few months are full of infatuation which is surely to fade with time, but y'all just started having sex. It isn't supposed to fade THAT fast...
hypnoticmix hypnoticmix 7 years
Good advice. My best friend went through this last year with her xbf. He was still married but separated for years. From the beginning he told her that he was apprehensive about pushing for a divorce because he was sure that his x would use his daughter as a pawn and that he would move for a divorce but it would take some time. Well one year went by then two and he wasn't doing anything about it. She finally had enough and said bye bye. It was only when she left him that he did a 180 got the divorce and then contacted my friend to tell her so. She said to little to late.
suziryder suziryder 7 years
I wouldn't say it's time to cut and run. I'd recommend reading Men and from Mars, Women are from Venus. That book seems to really get how men and women think differently, and really helped me understand my boyfriend (now my husband) in the early stages of our relationship. One thing that the book taught me is that men are like rubber bands; sometimes they pull away and go into their caves to think things through and sort things out. It doesn't mean he doesn't care about you (it sounds like he is trying, in a limited way, to reach out right now) - it just means that's how he deals with things. Men often turn into themselves to figure things out, whereas women turn to friends. And you need to understand that being there for him when he's ready to come out is the best thing you can do right now. Don't try to pull him out - it'll make him resist and burrow in further. Let him know you're there when he's ready, then back off for a while (that part of the above advice I agree with, some time apart might be the best thing right now). If you give him time, I think he will come back to you.
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