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July 9, 2014

A Frank Talk About Sexual Rejection

There are thousands of articles on the web about the problem of couples who are in conflict because one wants sex and the other doesn't. The writers offer many possible explanations and propose plenty of solutions. Maybe they have naturally mismatched sex drives, maybe there is conflict in other areas of the relationship, maybe someone is being too sensitive or too demanding, or maybe someone is a prude or a brute. There could be a hormone problem or some other medical issue, or one spouse could simply be overworked and exhausted. Experts suggest helping with the chores, improving communication, having regular date nights, getting more sleep, getting a medical checkup, agreeing to a schedule, sending the kids to Grandma's, turning off the TV and the cell phone, and getting marriage counseling.

Comments from both the deprived and the decliners indicate that all these problems -- and more -- play a role in sexual avoidance. But there is one issue that is mentioned regularly -- if not quite as often as some others -- and yet is usually ignored by the advice-givers. A lack of basic hygiene on the part of one's mate is a surprisingly common theme among sexual refusers. Face it -- if you look dirty and smell bad, your partner's first instinct will be to turn away. And yet it seems that many folks simply aren't aware that they have a problem.

We see this issue in the workplace, too! And, while co-workers will complain to the person who takes the last cup of coffee without starting a new pot, the one who is always late, or someone who fails to pick up a ringing phone, it seems that nobody wants to tell the unwashed that they are, well, unwashed.

So, for anyone who has been frustrated by the huge amount of personal space everyone around them seems to need, it's time to consider this embarrassing and oft-neglected (yet easily solved) possibliity.

Potential clues:
  • Your partner has complained about your body odor or your bad breath.
  • Your partner makes a wrinkled-nose face and cringes when you get close.
  • You can see dirt or grease in the creases of your skin or under your nails.
  • Your underwear is discolored. Your shirts have armpit stains.
  • The sheet on your side of the bed is gray or brown where your body touches it.
  • People frequently urge you to have a mint.
  • Nobody wants to hug you, sit near you or stand next to you.
  • Everyone seems to be holding their breath.
  • You can smell yourself.
What to do:
  • Take a shower every day. If you shower in the morning and work hard all day, you may need another shower when you get home.
  • Even if you aren't visibly dirty, stale perspiration or odors acquired from the environment (like smoke, cooking odors, and chemicals) can cause an unpleasant odor. Use a deodorant, and wear fresh clothing daily.
  • Brush your teeth. This is important for your health, your appearance, and your kissability. If brushing isn't doing enough, add mouthwash to your routine.
  • Practice good bathroom habits. If your underwear is always stained and streaky, try using more toilet paper or moist wipes.
  • If removing your shoes makes people gag, consider shoe treatments (such as sprays and powders) that will kill the germs and prevent odor. Own two pairs of shoes and alternate them.
  • Remember the details. Are your nails clean and trimmed? Have you washed and combed your hair? Are there nose hairs that need attention? Do you need a shave?
  • Think about your diet. Certain foods, especially large quantities of garlic, can cause even a clean person to have a strong odor.
  • If you believe you really are clean, and yet you still have a bad odor, get a medical checkup. Some health conditions can affect your breath or the way your body smells.

"Beauty commonly produces love, but cleanliness preserves it." -Joseph Addison

"If you go long enough without a bath, even the fleas will leave you alone." - Ernie Pyle

"People often say that motivation doesn't last. Well, neither does bathing - that's why we recommend it daily." - Zig Ziglar

"The gentlemen like it when a lady smells sweet." ― Bertrice Small


5 fabulous comments:

  1. Hi Rosemary! I love how you present/write about solutions that might be overlooked.

  2. HoldingMyNoseJuly 11, 2014

    I would add, if someone prints out this article and leaves it on your desk, that's a clue!

  3. AnonymousJuly 19, 2014

    While I don't refuse my husband, there are times he goes #2 and then seeks sex without washing his hands or just quickly running them under water.

    1. He may not realize that you notice this or that it bothers you. You could try asking him, nicely, to wash his hands.

  4. I totally agree with bad breath. I often tell my girl frankly that she needs a mouthwash and I feel sorry sometimes but it's for our relationship to grow right? Thanks for this tips, this helps a lot.



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