The question



My boyfriend masturbates all the time. He has no problem doing it around me and it seems our sex life has declined as a result. For various reasons, I really think it’s wrong and don’t understand why he does it. I feel he’s cheating on me in a way.

 

While many view masturbation as a perfectly healthy, normal act, others disagree. There are many reasons your boyfriend may masturbate. Some of the benefits are to relieve stress, induce sleep and help you become more aware of your sexual likes and dislikes. And, it’s a safe, efficient sexual outlet where one can fantasize.

 

The apparent rift his hand has caused in this relationship is worth exploring. Your belief that he’s cheating, frankly, is ludicrous. He’s not cheating, but rather participating in a self-contained pleasure-inducing activity; one that he knew long before meeting you. Personalizing his masturbation and seeing it as rejection paints him as a bad guy and doesn’t lead to a healthy exploration of the role you play in improving the relationship.

 

Your sex life may have declined as a result of his masturbation. In his mind, the quality of sex may be lacking and that is leading to his increased masturbation. Have an open and frank discussion with him and take a look at your respective drives and the quality, excitement and frequency of sex. Tweaking these areas may improve compatibility and make him less reliant on self-stimulation. Finally, view masturbation as your friend rather than foe and open your mind to the benefits outlined above, which could enhance your sex life. You might even find mutual masturbation to be both satisfying and an additional way to connect.