She’s not interested in sex

Question

I’ve been in a relationship with my partner for almost five years. We are good together in many ways – always happy and faithful to each other – but the problem is she often rejects me when it comes to sex. I try to talk to her about this but she either changes the subject or just says she’s not interested. I haven’t had sex for over two months. This worries me and I don’t know what else to do. Please help.

Answer

A relationship is about two people, but your partner seems like she’s in a relationship all on her own. If there are things she has issues with she shouldn’t keep quiet. She should tell you what it is so you can understand what the problem is. She needs to understand that her refusal to discuss the lack of intimacy in your relationship is not helping and will only make matters worse. If this isn’t sorted out soon it could lead to both of you seeking intimacy elsewhere. If you can’t resolve it on your own you might benefit from a session with a relationship counsellor. She might have valid reasons for her behaviour, but you can’t rectify the situation if you don’t know what they are. Talking about why she’s withholding intimacy will enable both of you to work on the solution.

Unfinished business

Question

When I was at school I met this amazing guy and we fell in love. We didn’t have sex because we were both Christians but we dated for over four years. After school he got a job in Polokwane and I stayed in Joburg. We continued seeing each other, hoping it would work out. One day I went to a funeral in Polokwane. While I was there I was told disturbing things about my boyfriend. I didn’t confront him, because I was too hurt, and I just cut all ties with him. Soon after, a guy who lived in my area invited me over and we ended up having sex. I became pregnant and was so disappointed in myself. My guy from Polokwane heard the news. He asked me what had happened between us and why I didn’t confront him about the story I was told. I understood then that it was all lies. Now, 10 years later, both of us are married but he says his feelings for me never died. I feel the same. We’re now friends, but we both want more. My marriage isn’t good and my Polokwane guy gives me all the support I need and says all the right things at the right time. What should I do?

Answer

You certainly are caught between a rock and hard place! Because you never had closure with this man, it seems as if you both feel there’s still something worth pursuing in your friendship. But I wonder why you were both content with moving on and marrying other people if you really were meant for each other. What you’re feeling might not necessarily be love – maybe it’s just the urge to find out what it would have been like if you had been intimate, since you parted ways without sleeping together. Be careful about deciding to do something for the wrong reasons.

I’m depressed and alone

Question

I’m a 42-year-old mother of three and I was in a relationship with the father of my kids for 17 years. We never married and now the guy has left me. He has bought a stand and is living with another woman. I recently decided to take an HIV test and was shocked to learn I’m positive. I’m unemployed and can barely provide for my kids. I don’t know how to deal with all this and I’m feeling very depressed. I stay indoors because I don’t want to be near people. I’m even afraid of being around my children. He left us with nothing and I don’t know what to do.

Answer

It’s not clear if you were married according to customary law as well as civil. If he has paid lobola for you then you can claim damages as his customary wife of 17 years. If not, then you should go to your nearest small claims court and sue him for breach of promise. As an un-wedded partner you have no claim no matter how many years you’ve been living together, but you can claim maintenance for the children at your nearest magistrate’s court. For the sake of your well being, both emotional and physical, you need to see a counsellor who can help you deal with what has happened. You can also join a local clinic’s HIV support group where you can meet people who can advise and support you.