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Dear Doctor Love,
I’ve been dating my girlfriend for two years but I am not attracted to her anymore. I used to have a lot of girls but I stopped when I met her because I wanted her to be my girlfriend. Now I try to avoid being alone with her because sex with her no longer interests me because I don’t get excited. I don’t want to hurt her feelings, she is a good girl, but I don’t know how to go back to before. Is it time to cut and run or should I talk to her about it and see if we should stay together?
It may sound shallow but physical attraction is high on the list of priorities in a romantic relationship. Attracting and being attracted to the opposite sex is built into our genes. That said, keeping that attraction alive is not as easy as it sounds. Looks, shifting priorities and changes in attitude can dull your sexual response to your partner and unless you take steps to stimulate it, passion will stagnate and die.
First determine what’s different. Is it appearance? If she has dramatically changed her appearance she may not look like the person who first caught your eye. Simple things like make-up, clothing and hairstyle changes are easy to get over as long as there are not more deeply buried issues.
Think back to the activities you did together in the beginning that made your relationship fresh and exciting. Do you still do the things that offer new experiences and adventures or do you hang around in your sweatpants and watch television? Get out and play a little. Paddle boarding is fun and healthy and the beach is a sexy place to flirt and spend time.
Do you put any effort into an emotional and intimate relationship with her? Touch is a huge part of forming a loving bond with your partner and stimulates the brains to release those chemicals that make one person desire another. Instead of avoiding sex, stroking, kissing and physical contact can reignite the desire you have lost.
Have your interests wandered? Looking outside of your relationship for arousal—sexting, cheating or escalating pornography use—can snowball and seriously damage your sexual relationship. If your brain is having sex elsewhere, your body will follow.
Relationships are roller coasters, they have ups and downs and you can get back on an upward swing. Recognizing and admitting there is a problem is a great first step. Now be honest about it and work together to get your mojo back. Good luck.