When you drive towards sex, which lane do you fall in? For some, getting in the mood for sex can be a challenging road trip. For others, it seems like they’re always speeding through the green light. When it comes to relationships, it’s quite common for all partners to have different libidos. Ultimately, this can collide with sensational and pleasurable sex.

But what is libido exactly? Neatly summed up, libido is someone’s general sex drive or desire to partake in sexual activity. It’s influenced by social, biological, and psychological factors and varies between one individual to the next. It’s not a one-size-fits-all appetite.

If you’re wondering what to do if your partner has low libido or, on the flipside, thinking “I have no sex drive and it’s ruining my relationship” - don’t panic! We have some sturdy pointers for you. Mismatched libidos are highly common and there are ways to swerve around a lower sex drive. Afterall, nothing feels better than great sex.

But why does sex feel better? If you’re on the hunt for sexier, positive partnership, read Why Sex Is Important In A Relationship to gain extra points in bed.

Two partners looking each other deep in the eyes.

1. Unpacking Mismatched Libidos

Every person’s sex drive runs on a fluid scale. Whether it’s due to the ongoing stressors of our work life, ongoing responsibilities, or getting older (and less frisky), it’s no wonder many sexual relationships ebb and flow when it comes to the libido. Mismatched libidos may cause partners to feel frustrated or even guilty for not being able to fully satisfy their partner(s), but it’s important to practise empathy in that case.

Empathy allows you to validate the other person’s feelings, really listen, and be present when it comes to speaking through your differences. The better you are at being empathetic, the more likely you are to redevelop that sexy flame.

Low libido can be the cause of stress, depression, erectile dysfunction, hormone imbalances, low self-esteem, chronic illness, and more. It’s typically an external factor at play. Let’s get into more specific ways you can cope with mismatched libidos if it’s something you’re facing in your sex life.

Two men sharing an intimate moment together while the sunlight hits them.

2. What To Do If Your Partner Has Low Libido

Don’t fret! This doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not into you anymore, or don’t want to continue working on increasing their sexual performance. Oftentimes, they may just be too shy to have the heavier conversations. In that case, don’t be afraid to start the discussion.

We recommend being patient and clearly communicating your sexual needs, desires, and wants in a non-judgmental way. No one wants to be told they’re not performing well, especially in a sexual relationship. For example, if you’re thinking “my boyfriend has no desire for intimacy” (and the same can be said about a girlfriend) then it’s important to find neutral territory (privately) and approach the topic without any blame.

If your partner doesn’t know why their libido is low, encourage them to get a physical exam with their doctor. And if, at first, they shut down the conversation then it’s a good call to take the lead in suggesting therapy or counselling. Remember: you’re in this together!

Another solid, and more fun, way to spice up the situation is to incorporate more time for foreplay with your partner(s). Get consent (first and foremost), ask them where they like to be touched, and try the trio of pleasure: licking, sucking, and fingering. You can also use a sensational Durex lubricant* for a massage or extra smoothness.

On the topic of foreplay, learn 7 Erogenous Zones You Need To Know For Ultimate Pleasure to further steer your partner(s) towards a sensational experience.

3. What To Do If You Have Low Libido

If you’re the one in the relationship who is dealing with a lower sex drive, there are plenty of measures you can take to combat your sexual situation. Firstly, we recommend self-pleasure. Yes, that’s right, good old masturbation. Personal touch can help you find the sweet spots that work for you, while getting you more comfortable with your own body. We recommend the Durex Intense Bullet vibrator* for a smooth start - guiding you with powerful vibrations that stimulate the nipples, clitoris, labia, or wherever else you please.

Secondly, if you tell yourself “I have no sex drive and it’s ruining my relationship” it’s imperative that you discuss this openly with your partner(s), or a doctor, and make it known explicitly. Open communication will allow you to figure out solutions from a mutual perspective and uncover alternative reasons why there’s mismatched libidos at play in your relationship.

On top of these two steps, try exercising more if you don’t already. Workouts that involve strength training and yoga are found to boost libido (and reduce stress) in both men and women. Additionally, introducing a diet of more libido-boosting foods such as salmon, nuts and seeds, beets, and more can keep your blood pumping and improve your stamina.

If you’re finding sex boring and routine, look into 5 Exciting Ways To Spice Up Missionary Sex for new takes on an old classic position.

Two fingers pressing down on an open grapefruit, signifying the act of fingering.

4. How To Cope With Horniness

Now that you’re done asking, “what is libido” it’s normal to question your own. First of all, you know we never think it’s unhealthy to be horny. However, if you find your sexual desires and higher libido negatively impacting your relationship or your day-to-day life - then there’s a few things you can implement to subside those urges:

  • Masturbate, masturbate, masturbate
  • Meditate or exercise regularly
  • Keep busy by engaging in other activities that demand your full-on attention
  • Spend time with your loved ones who you don’t perceive as sexual interests
  • Check in with your doctor (hypersexuality isn’t an uncommon condition)

One partner’s leg grazing the legs of her lover in bed.

5. Coming To A Conclusion

“What is libido” is a question you will no longer have to ask yourself after reading this article. Hopefully, you’ve gained new insights about mismatched libidos and how to manoeuvre around the science of our bodies in healthy ways. We hope you have fulfilling and positive sexual experiences moving forward and know we always have your back if you need a little extra help getting off. Signing off, Durex Canada.

*Ensure this product is right for you. Always read and follow the label before use.

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