By Bunmi Sofola

Dear Bunmi,
I don’t know why I’ve gone off sex. I’m in my 30s and currently live with my partner with whom I have a son. Our sex life used to be good even after I had our child, but now all I want to do is roll over and yawn. What’s wrong with me? My partner is getting fed up of my lost of interest in sex but I love him and fear this might tear us apart.
Uju,
By E-mail

Dear Uju,
Majority of women who seek help for sexual problems complain about a lack of sexual desire.
But it’s not just women who suffer. Men go off sex too and this can cause resentment, frustration and dent the confidence of you and your partner.

According to findings, tiredness, depression, illness, stress, anxiety, relationship disharmony, drug or alcohol abuse can affect sexual desire. Changes in contraception, medication, childbirth or the menopause can also drain your sex drive. Some people go off sex because of another sexual problem such as pain, difficulty reaching orgasm or impotence. Treat the underlying problem and desire should return. Even when the initial cause has passed, the damage can be lasting, making it difficulty to rekindle the relationship.

To get you sexual drive back, admitting the problem is the first step. If you’ve lost your desire let your partner know. Accept it may take time to get your sex like back, then resolve to work together to improve it. Stress is a common cause of loss of desire, so try to relax.

This can be as simple as making sure you switch off from work before having sex. A relaxing bath or some exercise will take your mind off your trouble.

Improving your environment also works. Cut down distraction by tidying the bedroom and create romantic ambiance using soft lighting and a few scented candles. If you’re distracted by thoughts of children, home life or work, you may find it difficult to get in the mood. Fantasy can help. Watch a sex movie or read erotic literature.

If you’re dissatisfied with your relationship, it could easily put you off sex. Counseling could help, so could a heart-to-heart with your partner.

He is a blabbermouth!

Dear Bunmi,
I have so fancied this man a long time that when I ran into him at a friend’s birthday party, I made a play for him. He invited me· to his flat and we made passionate love – it made me fall in love with him more.

To my greatest shock, he doesn’t want’ to have anything to do with me in spite of the fact that we’d been intimate. He told all his friends that I was cheap and easy; this hurts me a lot. I still love him and would do anything to have him back. Do you think there’s any hope for us?
Kelechi,
By E-mail

Dear Kelechi,
Which “us” are you talking about? The “us” that lasted for only one passionate rump in the sack? It’s a shame that you not only made a play for the man, you belittled yourself by thinking that the only way you could hold him was to have sex with him without getting to know him first. If that’s the way you’ve been handling your relationships, you’re better off putting a stop to it or there would be plenty of men who will be happy to take up such a generous offer.

Forget this man who’d been running you down and tell yourself that there are many decent men out there -you just haven’t met the right one  yet. Then, do yourself a favour and wait for him to show up. You’ll recognise him as the one who keeps his month shut after you sleep-together and who only opens it to tell people how wonderful you are.

Is my married lover fed up with our relationship?

Dear Bunmi?
For five years, I’ve been in love with this woman. We’re both married with children and never promised to leave our partners. However, my feelings for her are growing stronger and stronger and I’m starting to feel that I can’t cope with the situation. She sees me only when it suits her and this makes me feel like I’m being used.

We talk on the phone almost everyday but lately, she’s tried to end the relationship. I’ve told her I cant accept this. I’m starting to feel bitter- which I don’t like. I’ve even considered making trouble for her at home so that she’d be mine completely when her husband kicks her out for adultery. She used to give the impression that her marriage wasn’t happy, but I’ve realized she’s closer to her husband than she let on. It’s got to a point where I need to know where I stand.
Muiz,
By E-mail

Dear Muiz,
I would think it’s painfully obvious where you stand. This woman regrets ever having an affair and wishes that it was over. She also senses that you have become a threat to her marriage. Having sex either binds two people emotionally or forces them to accept the distance between them. Your lover has chosen to protect a marriage that you resent. Why not accept and support her decision?

Allowing yourself to fall for a married woman was dangerous and the rejection you feel is real but your lover prefers to stay with her husband rather than be with you. Instead of plotting revenge, wish her well. Follow her example and repair your own marriage. End your loneliness and self-loathing by giving your wife and kids the far greater love and attention they deserve.

Could his affairs harm my baby?

Dear Bunmi,
I’m 30 weeks pregnant with our second child and my husband has been having an affair. I found a message on his mobile phone from his PA  at work. She gave a graphic description of what they’d been doing together. He did not use a condom – now I’m worried he is caught something that could harm my unborn child.
Kike,
By E-mail

Dear Kike,
Some sexually transmitted infections can be a problem in pregnancy but generally, the risk to the baby is during delivery. You have time to treat any infection before the baby is due. Chlamydia can cause breathing and eye problems for a newborn, so it is vital you go to your doctor or nearest health centre to be tested.

Should I take my husband back

Dear Bunmi,
I left my husband last year because he was lazy, jealous and didn’t really care for me and the children. He kept saying he would change, but nothing happened.

Now, he’s begging me and the children to come back and he is once again swearing he’ll change, look for a proper job instead of his bogus business and look after us. I don’t know what to do. I am lonely and miss his company and the sex, but, I don’t want to try again if it isn’t going to work out. I don’t want to waste any more of my life. What should I do?
Lolade,
By E-mail

Dear Lolade,
For a start, you should look at the hard evidence. When you were together, your husband kept promising to change – and didn’t. What does this tell you about the likelihood of things being different if you go back to him?

If you’re still dithering, why not give him one more chance? Set some targets for him like, getting a good job and doing a place up for you to come back into. And set a time limit within which to fulfill these goals. If he fulfils these aims within the time limit, then, you have the necessary proof that he’s different, he’s capable of caring for his family and is now worth the risk of moving back with him.

However, if he just keeps talking about fulfilling these aims, then, he’s no different than he ever was, and you should run for your life.

Childbirth distorted my figure

Dear Bunmi,
I had a beautiful daughter three months ago and I’m so besotted with her. Unfortunately, I can’t seem to get rid of the excess fat that’s still hanging around my tummy, and bottom. Looking after my daughter has taken its toll on my health. I haven’t done any real exercise since giving birth and I’ll be starting work soon. I feel such a lump. Is it too late to try some exercise?
Bimbola,
By E-mail

Dear Bimbola,
It is never too late to start getting in shape. The months after having a first baby are so busy and stressed that women often don’t have the energy to exercise. What you need is time and space for yourself. It’s obvious you love your daughter to bits and want to spend every minute of the day with her, but, it would be better for you both if you took a little time for yourself every week.

If you have help, then, let your house-help, partner, family and friends help with some of the chores so you could look after yourself. Visit the gym if you can or take regular walks and do mild exercises. Not only will that get you into shape, it’ll also, help you de-stress and ready to face work when you eventually resume.

Disclaimer

Comments expressed here do not reflect the opinions of vanguard newspapers or any employee thereof.