Last OC Column, or That Was Quick

Posted by – November 24, 2008

Easy come, easy go: I got word last week that OurChart.com is no longer, or will soon be no longer, or will no longer be updated, or something like that. So no, I wasn’t fired; everyone was.

So here’s the last column I wrote for them. It went up today, as planned, but there will be no more to follow.

(If anyone knows of a magazine that needs a queer relationships columnist, you know where to find me!)

“We’re not fucking enough!”

Although some people take a few pages to explain themselves, they eventually get around to complaining that they’re not getting enough – or any. They want hot sex with their girlfriend whether they’ve been together 10 minutes or 10 years.

The good news is that this is about the most common sex thing couples deal with. The bad news is that there is no easy answer. Okay, that’s not the only bad news, but I’ll get to that another time.

I’m the higher libido in my relationship, and always have been – with every partner I’ve ever had. (Okay, there was one person who gave me a run for my money.) But in our first months together, I was amazed and baffled at how rarely Betty thought about sex; she never notices when people are hitting on her, even still, and getting her to notice I was hitting on her was like having to send up an actual flare sometimes. I got to the point where instead of saying, “I’m going to bed – do you want to join me?” I had to say instead, “I’m going to bed – do you want to have sex tonight?” because otherwise she would join me for bed and promptly fall asleep the minute her head hit the pillow. (What IS the female equivalent of blue balls? Anyone?)

Like most high libido types, I assumed there was something wrong with my low libido partner. Mostly I assumed it was the transness. Secretly I worried she really preferred guys but didn’t know it yet. Sometimes I thought it was her body dysphoria, or her religious upbringing, or the lack of physical affection her parents expressed.

I like to fix things, so my goal was to get to the bottom of it, and “fix” her so she’d be normal and want a lot of sex like I did.

It really is amazing to look back at your own stupidity.

After many tearful evenings, huge arguments, a couple of therapists, a few ultimatums and many, many, many long conversations I’ve figured out that she just has a low libido. I know it may be hard to believe for us horndogs out there, but some people just don’t like sex as much as we do. Some people really don’t think about sex a lot; they don’t have sex dreams, and they find arousal a little annoying even when it does happen.

That doesn’t mean there absolutely aren’t possible problems if someone really avoids sex; with trans people there’s body dyshoria to deal with sometimes. For everyone else, there may be a history of sexual violence, a dislike of one’s body (though honestly that never stopped me); depression, or they may be taking a medication that doesn’t mix well with libido (like ever anti-depressant except Wellbutrin).

But it could be that they just don’t like sex that much, even if they love you, and even if they desire you. In the long run I’ve realized that Betty has a disconnect somewhere between her head and heart and her genitals, where the signal gets lost on the way down. I have learned to see her desire for me in her eyes, and in her affection; I know that she wants me to be hers and hers alone, and – let’s be honest – I’ve learned to enjoy masturbating a lot more.

1 Comment on Last OC Column, or That Was Quick

  1. traceldel says:

    Wow. You just wrote the sexual history I have with my (non-trans) husband of 20+ years. Until I (simultaneously) went on Prozac and had a hysterectomy/oopherectomy, I had always had a significantly higher libido. Add to that my prior long-term hot, hot, hot relationship with an old boyfriend, and it made our first few years very difficult. Mike is very androgenous, and also has that same disconnect you describe in Betty. We have a very non-trad role situation – he is a “house-husband” musician/writer who has never made any money at the things he is really good at, while I am the super busy professional. We are perfectly suited to one another and daily thank our lucky stars that we found each other (much to the bafflement of some of my conservative realatives). Our relationship just keeps getting better and better even though sex is a rare event.

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