Our sex life is almost non-existent

Dear Rebecca,

My wife was ill for a couple of years and since then our sex life has become almost non-existent. She is better now but I just don’t know how to get things going again. Please can you help?



Hi Richard,

Thank you for your email. It is not uncommon for prolonged illness to take its toll on your sex life and sometimes your whole relationship. Besides the stress and worry that illness can create, it also diverts our attention and energy. If this occurs over a prolonged period as it has with your wife, it’s easy to get out of the habit of intimacy. You didn’t mention what your wife’s illness was, so it’s also possible that she has some added issues to intimacy that relate directly to her illness.

I would suggest that you first identify for yourself what it is that you’d like to ‘get going’ again. When you have a clear idea then speak to your wife. Be empathetic and gentle. Tell her that you understand why your sex life got put on the sidelines and that you’d like to talk about firing it up again. Ask her how she has felt about that aspect of your relationship and how she would like to move forward.

Be open to starting slowly and taking it easy. Rather than trying to return to the sex life you had pre illness, allow yourselves to consciously create something new. You have both been through a lot together and although it has pushed you temporarily apart, it can also help to deepen intimacy.

It could be a great opportunity to start all over again with each other. Learn what each other likes and doesn’t like, try new things and enjoy a new blossoming sex life together.

With love,


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