This recent Dear Prudie column might seem like the sign of a marriage on the brink — one partner who won’t initiate sex, and another who is despondent about it. But this scenario can be a lot more common than expected.
Anyone in a long-term relationship has been turned down for sex at least once, says sex therapist Vanessa Marin.
"Even if you understand the reasons why your partner wasn't open to connecting in that moment, there's still no denying that being turned down hurts,” she says.
Rejection can make a person feel bad or remind them of past rejections, even when the reasons for it are 100 per cent non-personal, she says.
And when those feelings are allowed to fester they can cause real problems for a couple. But the good news is that the problem is not unusual or unfixable. These nine expert tips can help you find out why initiating sex has become a problem and give you strategies for solving the issue before it becomes serious.