Even When I Don’t Want To Have Sex With My Boyfriend, I Still Do It—Here’s Why

When my girlfriends find out that I have sex even when I don’t want to, it’s always a controversial issue. It’s like I’m a traitor to the feminist movement, subjecting myself to and enabling male dominance and patriarchy. But I don’t see it that way—here’s why.

  1. My boyfriend never forces me to have sex. I think it’s important to say this first: no one forces me to have sex. If I tell my boyfriend that I’m really not into it, he respects that. Still, since it can come off like a cop-out or a rejection, it’s super important that I give him sincere reassurance. It’s not him, it’s not punishment, and it’s not passive aggressiveness. It’s just that I’m sick, fertile, or I’ve got my period, and sex just doesn’t happen.
  2. I can be lazy and complacent so sometimes I need him to get me going. There are times when I feel incredibly low. At times, it’s my shifting hormones. Sometimes I’m tired. Other times, it’s mild depression. Either way, there are days when I have zero interest in anything, including sex. But you know those friends who shake things up when you would have preferred to just sit at home watching Netflix? You need people like that. They help you do things you think you don’t want to do. It’s the same with my boyfriend and sex. Sometimes, I’m so grateful he wants the sex because in the end, I almost always enjoy it.
  3. I choose to override my low libido. I’ve gotten to know my cycle pretty well and I know there are certain times when I’m in love-making mode. But during the week (or two) leading up to my period, my libido literally takes a vacation. The only problem is that my boyfriend’s libido doesn’t. In these cases, I still have sex even if my hormones aren’t screaming, “SEX!” I think I should still have sex—and so should he—even if I’m not craving it.
  4. Sex is just sex. I love sex. In my current relationship, it’s this powerful, intimate act between two people who love each other. But at the same time, sex is just sex. Even though I want to only have meaningful hot sex, that’s not always the case. It’s nice to take the pressure off and admit that with all philosophizing aside, it is what it is. Just like other things that become routine, it’s not always something I feel super excited about. Does that mean sex should be all or nothing? I don’t think so.
  5. I know my boyfriend enjoys sex and I want him to. I’m not too knowledgeable about a guy’s sex drive but I have a feeling it’s not as cyclical as a woman’s. At least, I know my boyfriend is into sex most days and I’m not particularly horny ever, really. Still, I know he wants and loves sex and I love that he wants to love me so I let him. I know that sexual intimacy is one of the main ways he expresses his love to me. To be honest, I feel pretty lucky about that.
  6. I don’t want my boyfriend looking somewhere else for sex. I’m not saying that “boys will be boys” here because quite frankly, boys can grow up and become men… or at least they should. But I also don’t want my guy to look—or even want to look—for sex somewhere else because I’m not giving it to him. I know that guys can cheat even if you’re sexually available to them but I don’t want to risk it. What’s the point?
  7. Why should my low self-esteem and self-confidence keep me from having sex? As much as I’d like to say I’m above this, I’m definitely not. There are days when I feel super unattractive, a bit fat, and absolutely not sexy. Of course, that’s never how my boyfriend sees me. Because of this, I have two options. I can either sulk with my false beliefs or I can kick them in the butt and enjoy some sex. I choose to be a kick-ass sex goddess and fake it ’til you make it.
  8. We have sex when my boyfriend’s tired, why can’t I? Nobody’s immune to being tired at the end of a long workday. Full-time jobs take their toll on everybody. There are nights when my guy could easily fall asleep when he hits the pillow. Meanwhile, I’m itching to get busy under the sheets. He usually makes love and I’m like, “Thank you!” Is it a passionate, crazy session? No, it’s something along the lines of slow and relaxed. I know I can do the same for him on my sleepier nights.
  9. I communicate what I need regardless. When I don’t want sex, it’s not that I don’t want to be intimate or loved by someone else. It’s just that I don’t want to have certain types of sex. Besides, I’m not always up for the 0 to 60 race every night. Or, sometimes the idea of taking everything off and shivering through the whole affair is so unappealing. I have days when I feel extra fragile and vulnerable and I say so and I ask for what I need: slow sex, sex in bed, food before sex, etc. It doesn’t really matter what it is, but communicating what I need makes it easier to have sex.
  10. OK, fine, sometimes I just cave and have the sex. Not my proudest moment, but sometimes I have sex even if I’m feeling angry or aggravated towards my boyfriend. Is it better to have an adult conversation about whatever the problem is? Yeah, it definitely is. But can we all admit that sometimes we’re just tired of arguing or of being the right one or the tough one? Despite everything, I want the sex just as much as my boyfriend does, and sometimes I want the sex more than I want to hold it over his head. So, even when I know I shouldn’t have the sex from a logical standpoint, I don’t care, and I have it anyway.


Audrey Bea uses her life-changing but difficult experiences with anorexia and depression as the catalyst and inspiration for her work. As a writer and illustrator, Audrey creates empowering content to help women love who they are, and overcome the widespread illness of fear.