Maybe he's let himself go, maybe he's become really annoying, maybe he ticks you off because he's not pulling his weight at home--whatever the reason, you're just not attracted to your husband anymore.
The fact is, lots of long-term couples go through phases like this. Dr. Jane Greer, a marriage and family therapist in New York City and host of the radio show Doctor On Call, tells us how to rekindle the flame. (Yes, it's possible!)
• Remind yourself why you fell in love with him. "Take inventory," Jane Greer says. "Ask yourself what about him turned you on in the first place. Was it his sense of humor? His conversation skills? Whatever those characteristics were, chances are that things have been getting in the way of them lately. Maybe things haven't been good financially--so you're fighting more. Maybe you're both so busy you barely talk at all, maybe childcare stress is killing the laughs. Whatever the case, once you identify the culprits, you can take action to bring out his lovable qualities again and put some fun back into your relationship--and your desire will be renewed."
• Become his role model. "Be an example," Greer says. "Channel your irritation at him into taking care of yourself. It kind of goes back to the show-and-tell thing we did in first and second grade: Show your husband the changes you'd like him to make by changing them in yourself first. Then verbalize it. Devote a little more time to your appearance, start eating healthier, exercise more--whatever, then tell him, 'I'd love it if we did some physical exercise together.' When you change your own behavior, it will automatically have an impact on your partner. You've broken the pattern, so he'll have to break his!"
• Practice positive reinforcement. "Lots of times, our partners have no idea they're upsetting us," Greer notes. "They're oblivious! They aren't aware of it until the other person starts nagging. Then it becomes, 'No matter what I try, she's never satisfied.' Everybody hears the negative. So stop complaining and be positive with the things you say and do. Tell him, 'I love that you're wearing the shirt I like,' or, 'Thanks for putting down the toilet seat,' or, 'Thanks for shaving again tonight--your face feels so good!' There are a million small things your partner does each day to make you happy; start being aware when he does them, and let him know you appreciate it. Ultimately, most of us want to please the person we're with; we're looking for acknowledgment. If you give that to him more often, he'll respond by doing more things to make you happy. That will turn you on emotionally--you'll feel cared about and understood, because your partner has genuinely listened to what want and responded to that. As a result, you'll feel closer, more connected, and safe. And that's when sexual feelings can come into play."