This week, a woman struggles with her low sex drive while beginning the IVF process with her partner: 40, in a relationship, Brooklyn.
9:30 a.m. I sleep late today. Work has been out of control with Fashion Week, so my boss gave us all a day off. I work for a very big restaurant group and handle their events — like, million-dollar events. Given the nature of the job, I get very little sleep, and truly live the work hard/play hard lifestyle. I needed this late morning …
10 a.m. My boyfriend delivers fresh-pressed coffee to our bed. We’ve been together for three years, living together for two. If you didn’t guess it already: Yes, he’s a chef! I love his morning coffee. It’s just a supersweet gesture.
11 a.m. Decide to go into Soho and do some shopping. I need new clothes, new shoes, a new haircut, everything. I go back and forth between thinking “Fuck it! My looks don’t matter anymore!” and “I’m hotter than ever, why waste it?”
3 p.m. Get myself a glass of wine and a bowl of pasta at a café I’ve been going to for years in Nolita. Listening to a podcast while I eat. Quite a lovely moment.
5 p.m. My legs hurt from shopping so much. Hop on the subway to go home.
6 p.m. My boyfriend is on the couch (he works weird hours). He says “Come here.” He wants to fuck. I know him. I have no interest in fucking right now. I’m tired from shopping and would like to take a bath and get in my pajamas and watch TV. I tell him, “Thanks, but no thanks.” Then I walk away and feel weird. The tension around our sex life is a bit much right now. He wants sex every day. I never want it. And we are on a break from trying to get pregnant for the last two years, which has been crushing. So, yeah … I’m not into it right now.
8 p.m. I’ve cozied up in front of the TV and plan to stay here all night.
9 a.m. Back at the office in the Union Square area. I love my colleagues and we’re a tight group, so work usually feels like long hours with my best friends.
11:15 a.m. One of my friends here is having sex with a waiter at one of the restaurants we work with. He’s like 20 years younger than her. She’s telling me the stories. He loves to eat her ass — I’m dying. Glad she’s having a sexual renaissance. I used to be extremely sexual. I don’t know what’s happening. I’ve heard it happens after 40.
2 p.m. My boyfriend wants to take us to a new restaurant his friend opened. I tell him to make a reservation for tomorrow night.
6 p.m. Walking home from work. It’s a long walk but it’s my favorite thing to do, especially in the fall. Listening to podcasts and feeling happy and free.
9 p.m. My boyfriend is working late tonight so we don’t have to have an awkward sex talk.
9 a.m. Back at work. We’re all close, but maybe a little too close — sometimes it’s dysfunctional. Today we’re dealing with drama between two people in my inner work circle that happened a few months back but keeps resurfacing. I try to stay very level-headed.
6:30 p.m. I’m showering to get ready for dinner with my boyfriend. I shave, make myself feel sexy, try to get in the mood. Make myself a cocktail while I get ready.
7:30 p.m. This restaurant is beautiful. Amazing vibe. My boyfriend looks handsome. I kiss him hello. I never want to fuck his brains out when I see him. I used to feel that way about other men. I can usually convince myself to desire him but it’s not natural, per se.
I wanted to have a lot of sex with him in the beginning, for the first six months or so. But it was the pandemic, and things were stressful and weird. And we started talking about having a baby together early on. And then I turned 40. All these things combined — plus, a bit of the “he’s starting to feel like my brother, not my lover” thing — has resulted in this state of being.
10 p.m. We’re home. We have sex. It’s nice. I don’t want it to sound like I don’t enjoy sex with him — it’s just that it’s “fine,” not earth-shattering.
9 a.m. I’m at work. I always feel good the morning after we’ve had sex because the pressure is off for a few days, and we feel a bit “reset” as a couple.
12 p.m. A wine-tasting at the office. So fun!
2 p.m. Properly tipsy at work. I love this feeling but obviously I get nothing done.
4 p.m. I get to go home for a few hours because we have an event tonight. Disco nap. I turn on some porn. Trying some new channels. Wish I knew more about where the best free porn is. I try YouPorn. It does the trick.
Even as my desire for sex has decreased, my relationship with porn hasn’t suffered. But it’s more of a habit: “me time” or self-care, or whatever.
8 p.m. I’m at one of our venues, all dressed up. I’m too busy for the next few hours to notice any guys or flirt. It’s probably why I’ve never cheated on my boyfriend. I’m too busy! I don’t know if he’s ever cheated on me. He’s always around and wanting me, and no one else, so … I’d guess no?
8:30 a.m. Heading uptown for a gynecologist appointment. We have to start IVF and I’ve been putting it off. We tried to get pregnant for a long time and never could. Going to discuss it all with a new doctor today.
10:30 a.m. In hindsight, I should have brought my boyfriend to the appointment. There’s a lot of information to process. We’re going to start IVF right away, I think. I know he’ll be supportive. We’ll talk about it tonight.
1 p.m. I’m at work. I love that I can speak freely about this stuff with my colleagues. Between all of us, everyone is dealing with either fertility, pregnancy, unwanted pregnancy.
7 p.m. My boyfriend is so sweet about the IVF stuff. He wants kids as much as I do, and he’s willing to put in the time, money, energy that fertility treatments require. He’s letting me steer the ship but with his full support and willingness to do whatever it takes. It’s romantic to me that we’re starting this journey together. It’s sexy to me that we’re doing something scary together.
9 p.m. We have sex, and I actually come this time.
9:30 a.m. No work today, just lounging around. My boyfriend is at the restaurant so it’s just me.
11:30 a.m. I order in ramen. It’s early but whatever!
3 p.m. Binge-watched Industry. Didn’t understand one word. Not one word! Loved it anyway.
4 p.m. Masturbate to the hot lesbian scene on Industry.
6 p.m. Order in sushi. Obviously I’m craving salt. Maybe I’m pregnant? Despite months and months of disappointment, I still let myself have hope. Hope is healthy, right? I don’t have any pregnancy tests or I would take one.
10 p.m. Ended up talking to my mom for a few hours on the phone. She’s so eager for me to have kids and promises to help with child care and anything else we need if/when I get pregnant and have the baby. I think she feels bad that she can’t afford to help with IVF, but I tell her that her love and support means more than any amount of money. I mean it too.
10:30 p.m. I get into bed, still alone.
8 a.m. I get my period. Hence the salt. Oh well.
9:30 a.m. My boyfriend and I have to do a bunch of paperwork for the fertility stuff, and deal with insurance too. He makes me my sweet cup of coffee and we drill down on the forms. Again, I find it very special to be in this tough (yet hopeful!) journey together. I feel so close to him right now.
12:30 p.m. We walk to the grocery store. My tampon starts to leak so I run home to deal with it.
4 p.m. As he prepares soup for dinner, I lay around on the couch looking for movies for us to watch. I’m struck by this feeling that lazy days like this will soon be over for us, when we have kids. I tell him to come and cuddle with me.
5 p.m. We’re kissing on the couch. His hand is up my shirt. I remind him that I’m on my period and then decide to give him a blowjob.
5:15 p.m. I’m kneeling on the floor blowing him on the couch. I lick his balls because I know he loves that. I touch his ass a little — also a good move. I’ve also learned that if I talk dirty, he comes quicker.
7:30 p.m. Dinner is delicious and we’re both satisfied. I have a lot to be grateful for.
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