Ask the Femme: I’m not attracted to my boyfriend, am I a lesbian?

Natasia Langfelder of Ask the Femme

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Hi Femme,
How do you know if you are bisexual or lesbian? I have identified as bisexual for several years and now I am questioning it. I am in a committed three-year relationship with my boyfriend whom I love a lot. I love spending time with him, hanging out, having intimate conversations, I even like cuddling him to sleep. However, these last few weeks I have not been sexually attracted to him. I’ve even come to the point of faked enthusiasm when having sex with him and the only way I was able to enjoy myself was to pretend at different points that I was with a woman. I’ve never been with a woman before, but I have occasionally watched lesbian porn.

I am really confused and heartbroken. I would be devastated to leave him because he is my best friend and I can’t imagine not having him in my life. I’m just completely bummed out in the bedroom department.

Bisexual convenience?

Hey BC,
Thanks for writing. I get a lot of questions asking me how to tell if you are lesbian or bisexual. This is the last one I’m going to answer. Mainly because no one can know the answer to that but you.

Sexuality is a personal thing and no one can tell you what you are or aren’t. I’ve written about this a little in past columns. I truly believe that labels are there to help you, not make you more confused. Labels can help you identify with others more readily, make you feel like part of a group and less alone, it can help you describe yourself to others in the light you want to be viewed in. The label doesn’t control your life, you live your life and label it whatever makes you feel true to yourself. You define yourself and you use your label to describe who you are. Or don’t. Who even says you have to label yourself. It seems to be a natural human instinct to do so, but if you want to be a free-spirited fairy queen without a label, then go for it.

Now, let’s get to the heart of your problem, BC. The problem isn’t if you are bisexual or a lesbian; the problem is that you aren’t attracted to your boyfriend. Let’s look at some of the facts, you’ve been with him for three years and you haven’t been attracted to him for a few weeks. Many couples who have been together for multiple years have ebbs and flows in their sex life. There could be other things in your life that are affecting your libido.

Before you throw away your relationship with your best friend, do some soul searching. Ask yourself some of these questions:

  1. Have I been more stressed lately? Stress can affect your libido. Have you been under more pressure than usual at work? Are there issues with family members or friends that are draining you and affecting your love life.Remedy: Find a positive outlet to relieve your stress so it doesn’t bleed into your relationship. There are tons of fun me-time things you can do: work out, walk the dog, meditate, play video games, read a book, watch your favorite TV show, go out with your BFF. Anything that helps you release tension and clear your mind will do.
  2. Are my boyfriend and I treating each other like family members? Relationships that are as intimate as the one that you are describing with your boyfriend might have started to change his place in your life. Do you guys act more like friends or buddies than two people in a romantic relationship? Do you coddle him like you are his mom? Does he tease you like he’s your brother? There’s no faster way to kill your sex life than by treating each other like family members.Remedy: Take some time apart, maybe a night or two and rekindle the romance. Go out on a few dates together, next time your are together make it special and romantic. Don’t take each other for granted, make sure you treat each other like the sexy beasts you are.
  3. Am I bored with my sex life? If you’re constantly slipping away into fantasyland during intimate times then the answer is probably yes.Remedy: Get a little crazy. What are your fantasies that don’t involve women? Is there anything you want to try with your guy? What about trying to find a “unicorn” (a bisexual women who is into threesomes) who might want to help you fulfill some of your fantasies. Or, barring that, just ask your boyfriend if he would be OK with you exploring your attraction to women in real life.
  4. Am I not attracted to any men, or is it just my boyfriend that I’ve lost interest in? This is a pretty important question if you are trying to ascertain if you are lesbian or bisexual. Again, I can’t answer this for you.

The most striking part of your email is that you haven’t felt attracted to your boyfriend for a few weeks. A few weeks out of three years isn’t anything to get too upset about, especially in a relationship that is as strong as yours is. Try to look within yourself and understand yourself better, try to get more romantic and stay present with your partner instead of slipping away into a fantasy. If a few months go by and you still adore your boyfriend in a platonic way, then call it quits and strike out on your own to discover who you are.

Good luck, BC! Let us know how it goes.

The Femme

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