My husband is not attracted to me AT ALL. We have been together almost three years. We are both 36 years old and this is the second marriage for both of us. The first six months of our relationship was great; we had sex two or three times a week. In the last two years I think we have had sex five times. We have had sex twice in the last year. Now I am eight months pregnant. Every time I try to talk to him about our sex life, it turns into a huge argument. I am at my wits end and considering leaving him after the baby is born. He says he loves me, but is stressed out from work. Or he accuses me of only being interested in sex; he calls me a whore because I ask him for sex. I am an attractive woman and I never have had this problem with anyone in my life. Please help me!!!

Unfortunately, yours is not an uncommon story. All too frequently I hear tales of how relationships that began with passion and romance change within the first year. Often these relationships were more about lust or desparation than about love, and more about conquest than about intimacy. Once the dating period is over and the conquest accomplished, the parties often find that they have little in common, especially in the areas that matter. Things get worse when they marry because the relationship is taken for granted as one or both parties focus on work and other areas of personal interest. They forget that making a marriage fulfilling demands that each party work at it, e.g., keeping the romance alive through a weekly date night.

It is similar to planting a garden. Once planted the flowers must be attended to; they must be nourished and fed, watered, and pruned. If not they will die and weeds will take over the once beautiful flowers. All too often peope fear intimacy and commitment. In the most successful marriages, the parties were best friends prior to marriage and continue to be best friends afterwards.

You do not indicate the basis for your marriage. Nor do you say how long your have been married. The sex diminished after the first six months of the relationship, yet you still married. Why wasn’t the problem addressed right away? And why did you decide to have children? Were you operating on the “biological clock” issue? There are too many unanswered questions to give very specific counsel. I can say this, however. Now that you are going to have a baby you have a responsibility to give this marriage your best shot. And that means telling your husband that you are unhappy with the marriage. That love alone is not enough. That he is disrespecting you when he calls you a “whore” and tries to make you bad for wanting greater physical and emotional intimacy. Tell him that you want him to go with you for marriage counseling and that if he does not go with you, then you are considering divorce. The two of you owe this much to your child, if not to one another.