Sex & Relationships

Sex With My Ex-Husband Was Incredible, but My New Partner Is Dreadful in Bed

How can I get him to be a better lover without hurting his feelings?

Photo Credit: Yuriy Rudyy / Shutterstock

I am beginning to dread sex. My ex-husband was an incredible lover and we were together for 22 years, but he was unfaithful to me more than once and we divorced. About a year later, I met my current partner. I have tried telling him what I would like but unfortunately he truly is dreadful in bed. He is an amazing man and our relationship is pretty solid and the last thing I want to do is hurt his feelings.

No one is a “good lover” with every partner, because being “good in bed” requires the ability of both people to share their sexual needs and desires, and teach each other how to be mutually satisfied. I understand that you have tried to teach your new partner, but if he has been unresponsive, you must decide how important good sex is to you in the long term, and if you could tolerate a life without it. Many people are faced with such choices, but different people have different priorities. In your case, you have already sacrificed good sex – in your marriage – because fidelity was more important to you. I understand you do not want to hurt your partner, but it would be very reasonable to try once more, saying something along the lines of: “I care about you, and would like to consider having a future together, but I do not feel we have yet found a way to be sexually compatible. I really need you to listen to me, and I want to do what works best for you, too.” If this does not yield the desired results, perhaps you should consider beginning a search for someone else.


Pamela Stephenson Connolly is a psychotherapist who specialises in treating sexual disorders.