The stresses of modern-day living have led 1 in 5 couples down the road to a sexless marriage. Our writer at The Hudsucker explores the silent epidemic by talking to individuals in such unions, along with seeking insight from Marriage and Family Therapist Intern, Melissa Risso, M.A Counseling Psychology; and Christian marriage counselors, Paul and Lori Byerly of The Marriage Bed.
A marriage without sex is a lot like a burger without the bun. What’s the point of calling it a ‘burger’ if it isn’t exactly complete? For the past few years, social scientists have been studying sexless marriages for clues about what can go wrong in relationships and factors leading to the issue. In an article last year from the National Post, author and marital therapist, Andrew G. Marshall stated that sexless marriages have become the latest epidemic many married couples are silently facing today.
For Lucy, 30, in suburban Arkansas, sex has always been a thrill. It gave her energy for the day, brightened her mood, and connected her in rather intimate ways with her husband of thirteen years, Jeremy, 32. As the couple got married fairly young, Lucy continues to study hard in college, but often tired between school and her day job, so she heads to bed early and is usually fast asleep before her husband joins her. Lucy shares how in many ways, things started going sour in their seventh year of marriage, a condition researchers call “the seven year itch”, a psychological term suggesting that happiness in a relationship declines around year seven.
“I just felt like it was the same old routine,” she says. “I just didn’t feel too happy about it. We would have date night, go out, have fun like old times, and get frisky, but it’s just not for me anymore. With school and everything going great for me right now professionally, I don’t find it to be a priority. We haven’t had sex for four years now.”