Differing Sexual Appetites

"Jeff never wants to have sex," says Maribel of her husband of five years, whom she hasn't been intimate with in two months.

"Maribel wants to have sex all the time," Jeff complains. "Maribel keeps track of our sex life by the calendar, for how many days it's been since we've had sex."


In an effort to woo her husband, Maribel got breast implants, created an erotic atmosphere in their bedroom and dresses sexy, but nothing works. "I'm thinking that this is going to be a very, very special bed, but there is nothing happening in this bed," Maribel shares.  


[AD]"The breast implants really look good, but it doesn't make me more interested in having sex," Jeff admits. "She keeps pushing me to take Viagra. One night at dinner, I was chewing up my potatoes, and I felt something crunchy, and it was a Viagra."

"I have never put Viagra in his food, but he is saying that I have to all of his friends," Maribel says.





"Why did you agree to come?" Dr. Phil asks Jeff. "Are you hoping that I'm going to get her off of you some?"


"No. I just want a happy medium when it comes to having sex," he says. "She's on me every day about it, and it gets old after a while ... I make excuses. Having a heart attack and stuff like that."

Dr. Phil reads some of Jeff's excuses. "You've got almost 237 reasons not to," he says. "'I'm too tired, I ate too much, my hemorrhoids are bothering me.'"


Jeff admits he doesn't even have hemorrhoids.


Dr. Phil continues reading, "'I have a headache.' You get out of bed at 5:30. You sneak out before she wakes up ... 'American Idol is on. Not while the kids are in the house. Don't tell me we have to do it again! Why are you bothering me? What is your problem? Hey, hey, hey, back off! My doctor doesn't want me to take Viagra all the time. The doctor says I can have sex but my excessive smoking restricts things. I'm afraid of having another heart attack.'"


[AD]Dr. Phil points out that oftentimes couples fight about topics instead of the main issue. "We've got to find out what's really going on here, because you're making all of these things up," he says to Jeff. "You just don't want to have sex. True?"


"The pressure she puts on me, the working up to that," Jeff says. "I don't like planning it," Jeff says.

Dr. Phil asks Maribel, "Are you pushing him? Are you pressuring him?"

"So, it's my fault. Is it my fault?" she asks. 

Dr. Berman tells Jeff that as long as he's not taking any medication with nitroglycerin, he can take Viagra. "It's not sex that's going to give you a heart attack. It's the smoking that you're doing," she says. "So, as you've pointed out, all of those are excuses."


Jeff had a heart attack seven years ago. He used to smoke five packs a day but has cut down to three.


"Was it fine before you had a heart attack?" Kathleen asks Jeff.  

"Yeah, it was perfect before I had a heart attack," he replies. "A week after, I went back to the doctor, and it was the first thing I asked my heart doctor. He asked, 'How do you feel?' I said, 'Everything's fine, but something doesn't work here.'"


[AD]"He's saying that he's having potency problems, and that's his concern," Dr. Berman says.


Maribel says she feels rejected by Jeff, while he says he feels hunted by his wife. 


"If you're really worried about [having a heart attack], it seems like sex wouldn't even make the short list of risk factors," Dr. Phil says to Jeff. He asks Maribel, "Do you think that maybe if you backed off a little bit, he might come your way some, or have you tried that?"

"I have tried that, too," she says. 


Jeff disagrees.

"Is sex something you want to be part of your life?" Dr. Phil asks Jeff. 


Jeff says he wants to have sex more frequently, but his medication makes him tired at the end of the day.

[AD]"If it's a schedule problem, you could negotiate that, right? You could work that out?" Dr. Phil asks. "This is the negotiation I'm talking about. If you just aren't interested in sex anymore, it's really important to be honest about that ... right now, you're kind of in a standoff. At this point, you wouldn't give it up just out of spite, it seems. You resent her putting so much pressure on you."

"Yeah, sometimes I feel that way," Jeff says.


Dr. Phil helps the couple establish a happy medium in their sex life.