By Adeoye Oyewole (email@example.com)
For most married couples, the bedroom is a place of privacy and sexual intimacy. But many who have been married for a while know that this is often not the case.
Sometimes and for a long period, the bedroom can become a lonely place. To be clear, a sexless marriage is a marital union in which little or no sexual activity occurs between both spouses. A Newsweek magazine survey found that 15 to 20 per cent of couples are in a sexless union.
Studies have even showed that about 10 per cent of couples below the age of 50 have not had sex in a year. The definition is often broadened to include those where sexual intimacy occurs less than 10 times per year.
In addition, less than 20 per cent of them report having sex a few times per year, or even monthly, under the age 40. This definition takes into consideration the fact that partners may have varying sexual drives, but not as bad as having sex only 10 times in a year.
It is difficult to obtain statistics about couples in Nigeria, but sexless marriages may be common among our modern, educated couples. Our religious and socio-cultural values that accommodate polygamy and forbid divorce may mask research findings and inadvertently encourage marriages, even if it is sexless.
If you are in this category, there is no shame. What you need is help before it begins to affect your mental health.
The major causes of sexless marriages are psychological, but a few are understandably due to some biological and clinical situations that could be handled medically, such as vulvae pain syndromes, fragile vagina tissues from low levels of oestrogen, prostate difficulties in men, post-heart attack or stroke states, chronic arthritis, chronic low back pain, side effects of medications and diabetic complications.
There are also clinical psychological states such as depressive illness, chronic fatigue syndrome, hypoactive sexual drive, gender identity problems or body image difficulties. However, more than 90 per cent of the causes of sexless marriages are due to issues in the psychodynamics of the marital relationship.
A partner may have feelings hurt repeatedly, get turned down too many times, get disrespected and erect a wall that does not allow issues to be resolved promptly. These unresolved conflicts can generate a state of permanent hostility that blocks sexual expression.
The partner, who behaves in a passive-aggressive manner, may block sexual intercourse as punishment or protection from hurt inflicted by the mate. The perceived rejection may lead to loss of interest in sexual communication, which may be complicated by loneliness, anger and lowering of self-esteem in the spouse who feels that basic sexual human needs are deliberately frustrated by the rejecting partner.
Other causes of this resentment may be due to perceived imbalance of duties and responsibilities, including moral, religious and financial issues. This may get complicated when extra-marital affairs set in, which may lead to reduced sexual interest in the estranged spouse and, if the affair is discovered, the innocent spouse may cease to want to be intimate with the offending spouse.
This may manifest as restricted, formal and coarse communication as partners treat each other with contempt. Couples in this situation are definitely in mental distress or already mentally ill, hence they require professional help.
Those deeper feelings of resentment must be uncovered and dealt with as they practise active listening and try to communicate creatively in the process of discovery. You may think you have a right to be resentful of the way you have been treated, and while it might seem natural, resentment creeps into everything you do.
Every time you talk to your spouse, every action you take can be so tainted with this resentment that it becomes a psychological burden. The path to recovery is that you make a conscious effort to do everything for the benefit of both of you, and not just yourself. You must be honest and, without hatred or fear or anger, confront the problem of sexual intimacy together.
The bedroom should be a peaceful and relaxing place by keeping it free of clutter. To bring the spark back, you can go on dates, do fun things together, especially things that ignite mutual passion and excitement.
There is a need for the services of a professional marriage counselor, who will help couples to navigate and elicit hidden resentments and resolve. Such a counsellor will also help to identity faculty communication styles that may have shut down sexual intimacy and suggest new patterns and also appropriately refer those with mental health issues.
A successful marriage requires commitment, effort, compromise and forgiveness. Sexless marriage can impair wholesome development of children in the home because of discordance in communication. In addition, less than 20 per cent of them report having sex a few times per year, or even monthly, under the age 40.
The facility of education and financial empowerment of our modern wives may serve as templates for more conflicts leading to ego-stalemates that may injure sexual intimacy. Our relatively lower rates of divorce, even among our educated couples, compared with the western world, may find compensation in sexless marriages as a manifestation of emotional divorce.
Legendary Football Star, Diego Amando Maradona Dies at 60
Diego Maradona, one of football’s greatest-ever players, has died. He was 60 years.
The 1986 World Cup winner had surgery to remove a blood clot on the brain earlier this month. The Argentine Football Association confirmed he had died this afternoon.
“The Argentine Football Association, through its president Claudio Tapia, expresses its deepest sorrow for the death of our legend, Diego Armando Maradona. You will always be in our hearts,” they said.
Another of football’s greats, Pele, has led the tributes to: “Certainly, one day we’ll kick a ball together in the sky above.” Follow latest updates and reaction here.
Dr Leopoldo Luque, Maradona’s personal physician, said the former player had shown signs of improvement after a successful operation three weeks ago.
Dr Luque said Maradona “laughed” and “grabbed my hand” just a day after he had the procedure.
“Diego is without any type of neurological deficit, without any type of complication associated with surgery,” Luque said, addressing reporters at the clinic’s door.
“He has an excellent post-operative period, the laboratory parameters even improved.
“The first impression is it is favourable, but it is difficult to evaluate.”
Gbajabiamila Asked to Cough Out N500m As Compensation for Family of Slain Vendor
The family of Ifeanyi Okereke, the vendor killed by a security aide of Femi Gbajabiamila, speaker of the house of representatives, is demanding N500 million from the number four citizen.
Last week, Okereke was shot by Abdullahi Hassan, a Department of State Services (DSS) operative attached to the speaker.
According to PUNCH, the demand was contained in a letter addressed to the speaker by Mike Ozekhome, counsel to the family.
In the letter dated November 23, the Okereke family said the demand is not enough to replace their son.
“Our clients have instructed us to make from your good self, the following modest demands: That you use your good offices to ensure the immediate prosecution of your security aide (Abdullahi Hassan), who went on a frolic of his own, clearly acted outside the purview of his duty and responsibility by shooting to death an innocent, harmless and armless citizen,” Ozekhome said.
“That you adequately compensate the Okereke family with a modest sum of N500m only.
“This monetary demand can never adequately replace or take the place of their son, husband, brother, and breadwinner’s life. But it will at least mitigate the obvious trauma and hardship the premature demise of their irreplaceable breadwinner has placed on them.”
The lawyer said if the speaker fails to accede to their demand in seven days, they would take legal steps.
“Take note therefore that it is our clients’ firm instruction that in the event that you fail, refuse and/or neglect to accede to or proffer reasonable compensatory terms to our above modest demands within seven days from the date of this letter, we shall without any further correspondences from us, take appropriate legal steps to enforce our clients’ constitutional rights,” he said.
Gbajabiamila said he has handed over the aide to the DSS for discipline.
He has also visited the family of the deceased to condole with them.
Lekki Shootings: CNN is Desperate, Presented Doctored Video – Lai Mohammed
The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has accused CNN of desperation over its second report on the Lekki toll plaza shootings that happened on October 20.
The Minister said this on NTA on Wednesday.
CNN had on Tuesday released a second ‘investigative report’ on the shootings at Lekki toll plaza during the #EndSARS protests amid threats of sanction from the Federal Government.
But the minister faulted CNN’s reports, saying it lacked credible sources.
When asked about the second CNN’s report, Mohammed said, “It shows that they (CNN) are desperate. The so-called recent development has been seen before. There is nothing new. If there is anything new, it is a contradiction of CNN’s position.
“What we are asking CNN is that where is your evidence? The military has been consistent. CNN contravenes the basic principles of journalism – fairness, and balance.
‘They did the story without contacting the Federal Government for its own side. They relied on second and third parties narratives.
“They (CNN) were caught spreading fake news and they are trying to escape.
“We are accusing them (CNN) of basing their stories on videos sourced on social media. CNN has been inconsistent. It also doctored the video it got.
“We are confident in our position.”
On the letter addressed to Jonathan Hawkins, VP (Communications), CNN Centre, Atlanta, Georgia, USA, the minister said, “We have received an acknowledgment and we were told that the letter has been passed to the editorial team.”
CNN, in its second report titled, ‘Analysis of CCTV footage from Lekki toll gate raises new questions about shooting’, stated that it had obtained the video and subsequently analysed its content.
CNN also compared the CCTV footage with some of the videos on social media which the National Broadcasting Commission had sanctioned three local television stations for using and concluded that the authorities had more questions to answer.
The fresh report also shows the Commander, 81 Division, Brig.Gen Ahmed Taiwo, admitting before the judicial panel that his men indeed took live ammunition to the tollgate.
The CNN report also highlights the fact that Brig.Gen Taiwo’s claim is at variance with that of the minister who had claimed last week that the army fired blank bullets.