What the experts say...
Dr Rajiv Anand, Psychiatrist and Marriage Counsellor
Most couples have neglected the emotional aspect of sexual relationships. They feel that sex is something to be gotten over with; it has a goal and is initiated and performed by a man. This wrong emphasis is the reason for letting the intimate relationship become a mechanical exercise. This forces people to give excuses. They don't say it clearly as it might hurt the partner and don't admit that there needs to be a discussion as it would hurt their ego.They carry on making excuses and distance the partner, eventually leading to discord or conflict.
To resolve the issue, talk in a way that he/she should not feel questioned, attacked or made to feel guilty. Sensitive, loving moments build up a healthy intimate life. Any partner can lovingly open this matter for discussion and if needed, have the courage to suggest professional help.
Dr Rajan Bhonsle, Prof. and HOD- Department of Sexual Medicine, KEM Hospital and GS Medical College
Excuses are made based on the belief that sex might not be satisfying and rather than disappoint the partner, it's best not to have it at all.
I have seen men give more excuses than women. Women only have to allow intercourse; men have to hold an erection and satisfy the woman, so they face erectile anxiety. At times, they secretly masturbate and then give excuses to avoid sex.
Men need to understand that everyone has a few failures. The partner's reaction, if it is critical can make the other person feel intimidated. At times, even after a satisfactory experience, the man might feel the challenge of performing as well the next time, and avoid it.
Couples need to understand that they derive satisfaction with the help of each other. Men and women need to be active partners and suggest new ways of reaching orgasm. They need to talk to each other and express their anxiety. The other partner needs to respond correctly and convey that there is no pressure to perform every time.
How it all started?
A husband in the UK compiled a spreadsheet for June and July 2014 where he listed the reasons his wife gave to turn down sex. It included reasons such as ‘I'm watching the show’, ‘I need a shower’, ‘I’m too drunk and ate too much’, I have to be up early’, ‘You’re too drunk’ and ‘I might be getting sick’. The anonymous spreadsheet went viral after being posted on Reddit.