Ik hope to get some responses and thoughts on this, esp. from those who have like experiences. The last 20 years our love life was okay, but at a lower frequency as before we had children. Our children are growing up now and will be leaving the house the next years. So we seem to have more time for our love life. I would very much like to give it a boost.
The thing is that my wife has lost interest in sex. The last time I tried, we had 2 hours of foreplay, and I felt dissatisfied afterwards as I felt she only did it for me. She is trying, but doesn't get aroused. The last 3 or 4 times, we had periods of multiple months in between and she doesn't get very aroused.
My wife has promised to ask her doctor (a female doctor) about it. Of course her menopause has something to do with it. I read on the Internet that taking time for foreplay might help, but not in my wife's case.
My wife would be okay with no sex for the rest of her life. I would not be okay with that at all. Does anyone have experience with this, and have solutions/views? I don't want to leave her, but I also don't want to stay sexless for the rest of my life. (My wife and I are around 50 yrs old.)
From a womans perspective, I have a few thoughts. They're in no particular order, and there is no judgement for either of you.
When you say sex was "okay" for the last 20 years, for whom? For me, "okay" doesn't sound like a ringing endorsement.
I'd ask her if she were here, but she's not, so I'll ask you. How are your skills as a lover? How were her skills? Did she orgasm in the past? Are you aware if she did? No blame, but many men really don't know how to determine if a woman has.
Leading into my next thoughts, I think it would be very helpful if you both read the book "Vagina" by Naomi Wolf. It was an absolute epiphany for me as a woman, and for my husband.
There is so much physically going on with a woman at a certain time of her life, and it's a shame that a myriad of physical, mental & emotional changes that all interact with each other are dismissed with the word "menopause"
It is an excellent idea for your wife to seek out the advice of her doctor. Physcially, it's so much more than grabbing a packet of Astro Glide and saying "well that's taken care of"
You don't give any indication of how open your communcations are with your wife. Is she experiencing pain when trying to have intercourse? Is the pain from dryness that lube can handle, or is it from thinned out fragile vaginal tissue being abraided and torn?
Is it and/or her pelvic floor is too tight? Just one of the reasons for that may be the dread of the vaginal pain that will come when intercourse in attempted, the entire pelvic floor can tighten/seize up in anticipation of the pain.
The facia over time can literally lock up there, making intercourse, painful and even impossible.
If the tissues in your wifes vagina is fragile, dry, thin, she can be perscribed estrogen cream for that area. Since it's a cream it is topical and local to the area it's administrered to, and the estrogen doesn't enter the bodies system.
If the pelvic floor is tight, there are methods to address that, to release the bound of facia and muscle. That is an entireley different subject.
I think in many cases we've done many women a huge disservice promoting kegels and other exercises for pelvic floor strength when in the longer term it can really mess up your anatomy not just in the immediate area, but in others as well. We need to be intergrated.
Moving on to this idea of foreplay.
Connected to above, could part of the reason she doesn't get aroused over 2 hours be:
1) The anticipation that this is going to end in painful intercourse?
2) "Trying" to become aroused
3) 2 hours of doing anything is a job. How relaxing/fun can anything be after 2 hours?
4) Be honest, are you doing things she likes? Or are you doing whatever you've always done, and maybe assumed she liked? Tastes change. Aren't their things you liked sexually 10 or 20 years ago, but they aren't all that now? Are you getting positive verbal and non verbal feedback from her that she's enjoying something? If not, are you experimenting with something else? Maybe she doesn't like having her breasts touched anymore because they're too sensitive. Maybe she's not as interested in penetration, or something else.
5) How is your hygiene? Are you no longer as physically appealing to her?
6) Anxiety because here she is putting you out for this extended time and she just want to "get it over with" because of the combination of all the above and more.
Personally I never liked the word foreplay. Like there's this expection something has to come afterwards.
Why not just play?
Play with no expectations it's going to lead to anything, and maybe even the agreement that it's not going to lead to sex, and is just a time for massage, touch, both sexual and non sexual, relaxing in each others company, conversations about whatever comes to mind, spooning, napping a little, maybe having some cheese and crackers and an episode of The Crown while snuggling in bed.
How much of that do the 2 of you do?
Being close and friendly is very relaxing. Relaxed people trust each other that one isn't going to make some end goal. When sex stops being the end goal, it becomes something that happens along the way.