In India, the word ‘sex’ is almost a taboo. We don’t find people, especially women discussing the issue openly. It is as if that’s not their. Not being aware of or literate about it leads to women staying in a sexless marriage. They think, they ‘deserve it.’ Why? Because they have known nothing better.
In a country where women are seeking equal rights to speech, they are fighting similar battles in the sheets. By some studies, in India nearly 70 to 80 per cent women remain in sexless marriages. Women live with their partners being deprived of sexual pleasure.
Is it because they confuse compatibility with sex or because they believe that their pleasure is not so important as their partner’s? Here are 7 reasons why women choose to stay stuck in sexless marriages.
1. Not prioritising sexual gratification
In India, discussing one’s sex life is a taboo. Thus, there is a lack of awareness in both the man and the wife. As discussions related to sexual gratification are considered vulgar, women do not feel that it is an important part of a marriage. A woman may not realise that by not prioritising her sexual gratification, she is depriving herself of her basic right. Moreover, women are made to believe that a sexless marriage isn’t actually the worst form of marriage to be in. Therefore, they continue to stay in it.
2. They never miss sex as it was never satisfactory
A woman may lose interest in sex because her experience was never satisfactory. She would rather stay away from it than have it and remain dissatisfied. Her partner’s premature ejaculation, losing erection while insertion, lack of foreplay etc. leave her dry and dissatisfied. These make sex less enjoyable for the woman and she voluntarily stays out of it. A woman’s self esteem gets lowered if she has less sex and she refrains from discussing her needs with her husband. She may even internalise it and blame herself.
3. Sex outside marriage
If a woman has an unsatisfactory sex life in her marriage, she looks for it outside of it. She may often have one or more sexual partners despite being married. Married women in India might even resort to using dating apps or escort services without any guilt. The men they choose to be with are the ones they find attractive or good enough to have sex with but don’t usually get into a relationship with them.
4. Believing compatibility and sex go hand in hand
Compatibility and sex are two completely different and unrelated issues. Married coupes could be deeply in love but sometimes, even that may have nothing to do with sexual gratification. Indian couples feel that it is more important to be in a peaceful and harmonious relationship. A woman therefore decides to stay in a sexless marriage because she is emotionally attached to her partner. She has been living with her partner for a long span of time and it has now developed into a habit she cannot get rid of.
5. Blaming themselves for lack of sex
Women often feel responsible for the actions their husbands carry out. They feel guilty of their physical needs and even blame themselves for their sexual incompatibility. What also silences them is their fear of being judged. In an Indian society, a woman is brought up in a way that doesn’t allow her to discuss her marital problems even with her partner. Hence, she continues to stay in a sexless marriage.
6. Work-life balance kills their sexual urge
In India, women are expected to maintain a work-life balance. They are supposed to look after the house, family and children along with earning a living. While men have the option to relax at the end of the day, the same is not the case for women. After a tiring day, she would prefer going off to sleep rather than have sex. Even if her husband is willing, she might postpone the plan and this leads to frustration and tension between both the partners.
7. Fearing raising children all by themselves
An Indian woman fears that if she divorces her partner due to sexual incompatibility, she might have to raise her children all by herself. When it comes to securing the life and future of her children, her sexual gratification takes a backseat. She knows that as long as she is married, her children are safe and secure. So, she prefers to maintain the ‘complete family’ image rather than opting out of a sexless marriage.