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Ryan LCSW, Mental Health
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 872
Experience:  Individual and Family Therapist
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My current boyfriend, he is 59 and I am 58, and have been

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My current boyfriend, he is 59 and I am 58, and have been dating for over a year now. Before we started dating he not dated nor had any sexual encounters for over three years. He had a house fire, lost an old girlfriend to death and his father died. I came into his life and we have a wonderful relationship except for intimacy! He says he just doesn't feel the desire for sex but says he loves me????? He seems to be fobic about even touch which I find really strange. He says he wants to make me happy and is working on it! There are times when he kisses me passionately but as soon as it starts to get heated he back off! It hurts me deeply! I think something has happened to him to cause this lack of any type of intimacy but he says he can't think of anything! I think he needs counseling and has agreed to check into it. I love him but I can't be with a man who doesn't seem to like to be touched or touch me. Any advice?
Thanks for your question. My name is ***** ***** I'd like to help you out.

It sounds like you were correct to suggest counseling to your boyfriend. Often times the problems that he is having with being intimate would not have anything to do with how he feels about you, or how attracted he is to you. While I can certainly understand how his inability to be intimate would hurt you deeply, most likely it is his own personal issues that are causing this, as opposed to something that you've done wrong, or should be doing differently.

There are a lot of possible explanations for why he is having these problems. Sometimes just going through some periods of extreme trauma, like losing a house, girlfriend, and father, can be enough to send someone into a depression that makes it very difficult for them to feel capable of being intimate. Other times it can be a self esteem problem, or he could be self conscious about his own looks or ability to perform. The other common explanation for this type of behavior is if he has been abused in his past or has had some very negative sexual experiences that are haunting him. There are other possible explanations as well, but these tend to be some of the most common reasons that people have this issue.

No matter what personal issues he is struggling with, you are approaching it the right way by being patient and working with him a little at a time. For now, that may be the best that you can do until he meets with a counselor and is able to get a better understanding of why this is a problem, and what you can do to help. Of course this does depend on him making a legitimate effort to try and overcome this issue. While I can respect your patience and willingness to give him another chance, it is important that he starts taking responsibility for this so that you at least know there is hope for this to improve. Otherwise if there is no end in sight to this problem and he is not working on it, then it is only understandable that you would start to think about moving on.

I definitely wish you the best with all of this, and if there's anything else I can do to help please let me know.

Ryan LCSW and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

should he see a medical doctor as well as a counselor?

It can never hurt to see a doctor and rule out any medical conditions. From what you've described it sounds like it is more of a psychological issue, which is why I initially recommended a counselor. A counselor should also be able to recommend whether or not he should see a doctor, if he does not see a doctor first. The best place to start may be wherever he feels most comfortable. Chances are that whether he starts with the doctor or the counselor, he will get referred to the right person, and either way you know that he has started to take the first step in getting this resolved. All the best,


Customer: replied 4 years ago.