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Low Libido, Long-Term Relationships & BPD: HELP

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Liana

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Joined
Nov 17, 2020
Messages
37
Location
UK
Hey everyone!

I'm currently having a really intense identity crisis, related to sex/relationships/libido. This text is gonna be all over the place, I'm sorry about that. I have no one to get advice from IRL so I'm emptying my bag here, lol. Hope that's okay.

For the past 2 years, I haven't had much libido.

Usually, I have sex with people to prove to myself that people I find attractive find me attractive, too. In the past 3 years, I've been in 2 major relationships and am currently in a two-year relationship with a man I love.

He has a LOT of libido (he would have sex three times a day if he could) and, well, I don't. At all! I would be fine with having sex once a month if not at all.

Here's a little rundown of my sex life history: Until I was seventeen, I didn't allow myself to kiss boys or be in a relationship with a boy because back then I didn't want people to know I was in a relationship and start drama about it (the high schools in my city used to all start a bunch of rumors all the time and I hated the thought of people talking behind my back.) I also didn't think any guy would ever be interested in me / had very low self-esteem / feared being abandoned or broken up with more than anything, etc. (At this point I developed BPD due to other things). When I did learn that guys were interested in me, I enjoyed teasing them and not going further than chatting back and forth online or heavily flirting at house parties. I was super scared of physical intimacy with guys. I was fine with kissing my friends (guys and girls) for laughs, but I never went beyond that. I felt some kind of weird "pride" about representing a challenge for guys, about being "unattainable." (That was probably internalized misogyny, lol).

Then, when I was 17, I fell in love with the (idea of) a guy. We became friends very fast and he was so NOT interested in me romantically and I LOVED how cocky / how distant he was so much that I kind of convinced myself that all that mattered was his validation. We were best friends for a year (I was 18 at this point) and after a year of him knowing I was really keen about him and me repressing my feelings (and hating myself) because he had told me he wasn't interested in me that way, he kissed me. From then on, we were together as a couple. After 7-8 months, the relationship ended. I broke up with him because 1) I was scared to be abandoned by this person I had based all my self-esteem around and 2) because we didn't have that much in common and I was starting to realize that I was more in love with the idea of him more than him. He was a great guy and checked off most aspects of my "dream man" list except vulnerability and humor and those are really important to me.

During the breakup, I traveled and slept with a couple of men (to prove myself that I was desirable / to make my ex jealous; immature reasons). One of them sexually assaulted me and I didn't think much of it (the impacts of it came later) at the time. After 6 months of breakup, at 19, I met a guy with whom I had a fuck friends-type of relationship with (except we only kissed and did preliminary sexual stuff together). We were casually dating (nothing serious) for about 3 months and ended things on very good terms because I didn't want anything serious with him (I wasn't sexually attracted to him). Then 2 years ago, I met my current boyfriend. We hit it off immediately, and when I met him, I definitely had not done the self-love work nor the getting over my breakup or sexual assault that I should've done. Contrarily to my ex, with him, I was confident from the start and didn't crave his validation all that much because he made it clear quite quickly that he liked me. With him, there were no mind games and playing with each others' feelings. It was healthy open-communication from the start. From there, I began the best relationship of my life. I traveled with my boyfriend, have common goals and a similar humor to his, and am able to work on myself and feel confident as heck when I'm around him. He's made me a better version of myself for sure!

Sex-wise, it's not going well, though. Because I viewed sex as something I did to keep men around / to prove to myself that I was worthy, I enjoyed sex at the beginning "honeymoon" phase of our relationship. However, after about 6 months, I realized that sex wasn't something I enjoyed that much. Since then, sex is the biggest struggle in my relationship. I never want to have sex even if I do exercises both my therapists suggest, and I need advice on a couple things.

1. Is it normal that I think about my ex every day? I don't even remember anything about our relationship but for some reason, he's still in my thoughts daily. It might be that I'm still idealizing him, as my current relationship is a bit rocky. I feel guilty for still thinking about my ex. It's not even in a "loving" way, it's more so in a "I miss this friend and his validation" way.

2. How can I differentiate if my lack of libido is due to me having physical restrictions since my sexual assault, if it's me self-sabotaging during a long two year BPD cycle, if it's me just being a shitty girlfriend, if it's me who is actually asexual, if it's me being confused with my bisexuality, etc.?

3. How do you guys deal with relationship anxiety? I'm always asking myself: "Do I find him attractive? Do I love him enough? What if he breaks up with me? What if I break up with him? Am I enough for him? Do I deserve him? Who will he be with after me? Is it a good idea to be in a super committed relationship at 21? How dare I stay with someone when I have doubts about everything... Isn't that manipulation and lying? Why am I such a bad partner?"

I'm at the point right now where I know if I left my boyfriend, I wouldn't fall back into that pattern of seeking a new guy's validation to camouflage my self-hatred and my problems, which is great and improvement for sure. However, it sucks that I'm in a relationship with my DREAM guy and that I can't feel much sexual attraction towards him. I know I find my partner less attractive than before, but I think that's normal after being in a relationship with someone for a while (Please let me know your thoughts on this). I've wondered about whether or not I was with the right person (as in if I was trying to lie to myself in believing I still love him), but I thought about it and the issue isn't that I don't love him anymore. Apart from knowing my favourite celebrities or a hot Australian guy fancied me, nothing would "get me going" sexually I think. And even if my favourite celebrities wanted to be in a relationship with me, the challenge of "winning them over" would fade and my libido problem would probably still be there. I'm with a great partner; the problem is definitely me.

I just feel so bad that I can't make my boyfriend feel as hot, loved, and appreciated as he CONSTANTLY makes me feel.

At this point in my relationship, I don't know what to do. I have been seeing a therapist and sexologist on and off for two years now, and working on my libido, but nothing seems to be working to bring my libido up / to fix my unhealthy "needing a challenge is what brings me libido" issue. When we do have sex, my partner and I switch things up, communicate, try "spicy" things, etc. But the issue is still that I don't FEEL like having sex and he always does. Does anyone have tips regarding this? Insights?

Also (this text is all over the place, I'm SORRY), I realized that I was holding in a bunch of guilt and fear about being bisexual/bi-curious to my parents, so I came out yesterday to them, and that took a huge weight off my shoulders, truly. Hopefully, that'll help me feel more in tune with myself.

Generally, professionally and with friends, I'm always on top of my stuff. I'm super driven, confident, etc. I know I'm a good person in most aspects of my life except with my boyfriend and it's driving me nuts that I can't be as good for him as he is for me. I'm hurting him so much right now. He always feels rejected. His love language is physical touch (sex) and quality time, and all I know how to give/enjoy giving is services, words of affirmation and when I'm not overwhelmed with school work and studying, quality time. He's adapted to my love languages and I hate myself for not being able to change for him. He's patient and kind and loving through it all, though, I'm lucky.

I should also add that the more I'm distant sexually, the more clingy he is, and that's something I think doesn't help with me developing libido. However, I don't want to force myself to have sex with him just so things are more equilibrated in our relationship. I've done that in the past and although sex gives my partner newfound confidence in life / encourages him to do his own thing, not feeling like he has to worry about whether or not I like him, "giving" him sex when I don't want it is very traumatizing for me.

Our relationship always thrives the most when we're on vacation or when we're both busy. That's when I like seeing him most because if we're busy we both get to work on our stuff together, and when we're on vacation we're both experiencing new thrills and meeting new people together. The rest of the time I have a really hard time finding libido / wanting to cuddle and kiss.

As a whole, I'm just super lost. I feel like I'll never be able to love properly unless I'm in a long-distance relationship with someone who can manage not having sex for a couple months on end. Even then, I don't think I could be in a long-distance relationship because I have a hard time trusting people when I don't see them often. As for opening up our relationship, my boyfriend doesn't want to sleep with anyone but me and I would be too unconfident if he did sleep with someone else.

Useful things to know:
  • I have a LOT of school work and general job work and he doesn't, so that doesn't help with me not wanting sex and him wanting it.
  • I have a hormonal IUD and I'm on Sertraline (Zoloft) but I don't think these affect my libido that much. I also didn't have much libido when I was with my ex / in life in general prior to these two medical things working their "magic" in my body.
Sorry for being all over the place. I needed to vent. Sorry if this is negative. I don't know who to go to for this besides you guys. If you have any advice / any insights / any useful YouTubers or books or whatever I should check out about this, please let me know!
 
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dewey

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Jan 16, 2019
Messages
1,596
You seem like you're in a state of mind where you're over thinking so many different things, it's like your mind is in over-time, and you're digesting about five hundered different thoughts and feelings at once. You need to calm your mind. To be honest it sounds like you need to go through things one painful issue at a time, with a therapist. Develop a relationship with a therapist, over the period of 2-3 years, and untangle each issue, one painful problem at a time. Otherwise it will influence your life in negative ways, if you're carrying all of this, and the over-thinking.

To be honest with you, and this is quite direct, it sounds like you're not sexually compatible with your current boyfriend. Feeling like you're 'giving' someone sex is not a good position to be in, at all. You should really veer away from it because it is damaging to you. Taking those things into account, and maybe talking them through with a therapist (hopefully someone experienced and older) might make you change your self-perspective and perspective on the relationship for the better
 
L

Liana

Active member
Joined
Nov 17, 2020
Messages
37
Location
UK
You seem like you're in a state of mind where you're over thinking so many different things, it's like your mind is in over-time, and you're digesting about five hundered different thoughts and feelings at once. You need to calm your mind. To be honest it sounds like you need to go through things one painful issue at a time, with a therapist. Develop a relationship with a therapist, over the period of 2-3 years, and untangle each issue, one painful problem at a time. Otherwise it will influence your life in negative ways, if you're carrying all of this, and the over-thinking.

To be honest with you, and this is quite direct, it sounds like you're not sexually compatible with your current boyfriend. Feeling like you're 'giving' someone sex is not a good position to be in, at all. You should really veer away from it because it is damaging to you. Taking those things into account, and maybe talking them through with a therapist (hopefully someone experienced and older) might make you change your self-perspective and perspective on the relationship for the better
Hey thank you so much for your reply!

I'm sorry for the really long message, it's legit embarrassing for me.
I agree I need to calm my mind and take all of these issues one at a time, with a professional. And although I agree that since this message was so all over the place it sounds like I don't have one; I do! I've had the same therapist + sexologist for 2 years now; they help me out a lot.

I came on here just because it's always nice to receive advice from people who experience BPD / OCD / Anxiety first hand.

For my boyfriend; you're right, we're not sexually compatible at ALL. It's just impossible for me to think about letting go of a relationship because of sex when almost every other aspect of the relationship is perfect. I'm definitely thinking about your comment and if I still struggle with this in 6 months I will certainly need to think about what my needs are and about the fact that no matter how much I want to change for someone it's not guaranteed that I can.
 
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Purpleplum

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If you're asking yourself the questions that you say you are: "do I find him attractive" or "do I love him enough"....that should give you the answer of whether or not this guy's right for you.

The fact that he's not right for you could have an effect on your libido
 
L

Liana

Active member
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Nov 17, 2020
Messages
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If you're asking yourself the questions that you say you do: "do I find him attractive" or "do I love him enough"....that should give you the answer of whether or not this guy's right for you.

The fact that he's not right for you could have an effect on your libido
Not sure I agree with this... I currently don't really find anyone attractive at all (even celebrities, as mentioned in my way too freaking long text), and as someone with relationship OCD, asking myself these questions doesn't necessarily speak on how much I love someone (from what I've gathered about what other people with OCD have been telling me).

Your feedback makes sense, though. It's true that not being with the right person could have an effect on my libido. And I could think that I don't have any libido when in fact the issue is that I just haven't met the right person, but I've slept with a bunch of people and have only always felt attracted to them when I needed to "conquer" them or when I didn't have their validation.

Thanks for taking the time to read through my novel lol. When it comes to personal relationships I've always overthought everything, it's annoying. I don't really know how to stop this self-sabotaging cycle I have going on.
 
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Purpleplum

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Not sure I agree with this... I currently don't really find anyone attractive at all (even celebrities, as mentioned in my way too freaking long text), and as someone with relationship OCD, asking myself these questions doesn't necessarily speak on how much I love someone (from what I've gathered about what other people with OCD have been telling me).

Your feedback makes sense, though. It's true that not being with the right person could have an effect on my libido. And I could think that I don't have any libido when in fact the issue is that I just haven't met the right person, but I've slept with a bunch of people and have only always felt attracted to them when I needed to "conquer" them or when I didn't have their validation.

Thanks for taking the time to read through my novel lol. When it comes to personal relationships I've always overthought everything, it's annoying. I don't really know how to stop this self-sabotaging cycle I have going on.
To stop it you would have to figure out why you need their validation and the challenge of conquering them. You would need to delve into where that's coming from. It could go back to childhood possibly. When you do find out where it's coming from, you have to work through it, which is best to do with a counselor.
 
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Am33

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Sex is something that's been artificially inflated through the media , tv , movies cause sex sells . We been bombed with it especially for men to always want more , with as many women as possible . Which is against the real purpose of it to come into a higher union with another person and share ourselves . Most people are " taking " from the other person which is a ego game like validation .Our egos if left unchecked never get enough of anything always wanting more . We know if we constantly eat junk food our bodies will not get enough nutrition from it and we well always be hungry same with " junk sex " . Maybe talk to your BF make your love making more spiritual event something higher so you both come into oneness with each other which really is the purpose of it .
 
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Liana

Active member
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Nov 17, 2020
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Location
UK
Sex is something that's been artificially inflated through the media , tv , movies cause sex sells . We been bombed with it especially for men to always want more , with as many women as possible . Which is against the real purpose of it to come into a higher union with another person and share ourselves . Most people are " taking " from the other person which is a ego game like validation .Our egos if left unchecked never get enough of anything always wanting more . We know if we constantly eat junk food our bodies will not get enough nutrition from it and we well always be hungry same with " junk sex " . Maybe talk to your BF make your love making more spiritual event something higher so you both come into oneness with each other which really is the purpose of it .
Oh wow... I had never thought of that. That is a very original and useful suggestion. I'll look into it, thank you so much for taking the time to read and comment so warmly. Hope you're well x
 
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Deleted member 91323

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Hello Liana. As somebody with bpd, I have learned we tend to see turmoil and conflict as 'love'. Often we are used to unstable relationships and when we meet somebody different it can seem we do not feel that passion. For me, all my relationships were with men who made me feel totally insecure and I felt I had to sleep with them in order to keep them interested and also to feel attractive. I can now see I mistook their behaviour for passion and love when really they used me. I am not saying the same for you but just explaining how it was for me.

You are 21 and in my eyes you still have a whole life to live and to find out who you are as a person. I personally would not settle down at this age as I did not know myself and the kind of person I wanted to end up with. It is okay to date different people and to find out who you are compatible with.

As for libido, some people do not really enjoy sex and to me that is okay. It just helps to find a partner who feels the same way. I do not think sex is vital in a relationship and many couples do not have sex for lots of reasons.
 

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