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My wife has Fibro and her libido is non existent..
18 Replies
Stalvan - May 17

My wife is being treated for fibro and is taking amytriptyline. prior to this her libido dissapeared. after she started taking the meds she starting sleeping a bit better, and the pain subsided, but now it's back and she dose'nt get good sleep anymore. as result of this her libido is shot because she is always worn down. It has been some time we have been intimate and it is starting to affect our marriage negatively. Any one have experience with this or advice of how we can help the situation???


axxie - May 18

Hello Stalvan, and welcome to you and your wife to our website, where you will find, very interesting people. We talk about everything, so you are at the right place.

Maybe her doctor needs to manage her side affects, this medication have an affect over the central nervous system, to target the symptoms of insomnia, pain and fatigue.

It will take patience from everyone, your wife, you and the doctors. It could be she needs a dosage correction, or a change in medication.

When she has a handle on her condition and she has rested enough, there will be intimacy, you will need to be supportive to help her through this chronic illness, it doesn't go away, it cannot be cured, just well managed and that my friend is why we are all here, to learn from each other.


It is such a relief when you first find out, that the pain really does have a name, and then you will ask (and everyone does), "Just where can I place all the blame?"

No matter the limits, no matter the pain, there's no evil, cruel "Master Plan," It just simply happens, it just simply is. You adapt, and you change what you can.

But even with knowing the best and worst, all the pitfalls the future hold, you still have a choice, you quit or you fight, you determine the story that's told.

And every small step that y'all take, my dear friends, each battle that is slowly won, just credits the love and the caring that you share. That is why you care.


Stalvan - May 18

We are changing doctors and she has a first appt this week, so hopefully thie new doc will do better and listen to her. She has not been officially diagnosed, but displays 99% of the symtoms. She and the last doc were sure enough to treat her for it. She had a magnesium defficiency when we were younger, and she is going to inquire about that as well. Just been patient like this for almost 18 months and It is getting depressing and rather disheartening.


axxie - May 18

Fibromyalgia (FMS) is a disorder of the central nervous system. Essentially your pain receptors get stuck in the "on" position.

There are a number of problems associated with FMS, including unrefreshed sleep. If your wife is not getting deep restful sleep, her muscles can not repair themselves, resulting in more pain; tired and worn out, it's a vicious circle.

She should be on medication to help her sleep properly. Amitriptyline is commonly prescribed for that.

For chronic pain, there are alternatives medication that can help her, Cymbalta is pretty effective. Then there's Lyrica, specifically formulated for FMS, I do have to warn you, that Lyrica has unpleasant side effects. One of the most common complaint seems to be weight gain. Savilla is new on the market, I can't tell you anything on it, as it's just been released in the US. No matter what drug she's on, she will need to monitor her symptoms, all of these drugs will have an adjustment period and you will need to work with the doctor closely on this issue.

Diet plays a role for FMS people, we have digestive issues such as lactose intolerance. She will need to stay away from anything that contains artifical sweetner, food coloring, etc.,
Processed lunchmeat, deep-fried foods will increase her overall pain level.

There are still plenty of doctors out there that think FMS is a figment of our imagination. Your best defense is to be well educated on the subject. This website in particular, has some of the best information on the subject. You will have to be on alert, as well as your wife about being your own best advocate.

FMS is recognised by the Center for Disease Control and the National Arthitis Foundation.

I hope this helps, I can honestly say after 6 months on effective treatment, I'm much better and much more active then I was prior.

Good luck to you and your wife, and let us know how things are.


Fantod - May 19

Stalvan - Imagine having the flu 24/7. That is pretty much what your wife is going through as someone with fibrommyalgia (FMS).

Axxie borrowed some of the information on a previous post of mine and used it to reply to you. I'd like to add a couple of observations on your situation.

A common component with FMS is depression. Fibromyalgia is debilitating on many fronts. Lack of sleep, and varying levels of chronic pain
take their toll. I would suspect that your wife has other related problems such as muscle twitiching but you don't mention them. Did you know that someone with FMS nay also have difficulty tolerating the pressure of clothing against their skin. That can actually cause pain. The bottom line is that it is pretty difficult to want intimacy with another person when you hurt all over. She should probably be evaluated by a professional for depression. I'd like to gently suggest that you both see a counselor for some help sorting out your problem.

Your wife needs more than just Amitriptyline to treat FMS. There are several drugs available to treat chronic pain such as Cymbalata, Lyrica and Savilla. I take Cymbalata and have had fairly good results with it. Lyrica has caused significant weight gain in some people so that would not be my first choice. Savilla is new so I have no information to report on it.

If you want to find a fibro-friendly rheumotologist in your area go to the National Fibromyalgia Association website and ask them for a referral in your area. It takes time and a lot of tinkering to find the right medication and doseage for FMS patients. FMS can be managed to some degree but not cured.

I don't know how old your wife is but she may also be experiencing some hormone fluctuation which would also contribut to loss of libido. In any event, it is going to take some time to get any or all of this straigtened out.

This is what marriage should be all about. Supporting your partner no matter what happens during the course of the relationship. I sincerely hope that you will continue to try and work with her to address the health issues that she is experiencing. She is scared and lonely. If the situation was reversed what would she be willing to do for you? Take care.


axxie - May 19

Hey Fantom,

Yes I did borrow from one of your previous reply. I just could not formulate what I was trying to say. Fibro fog is really getting to me lately, and any way I liked what you wrote, it says' it all.


Sonja44 - May 20

When your muscles feel like they're being shredded off the bone each time you move...being touched is torture.

Meds can help...but they only lessen the pain for most of us with FM.

May I suggest you find new ways of romancing your wife. Using feathers to touch her body, soft music, very gentle and slow foreplay.

Re-learn how to get HER "in the mood." My husband did and it has made us feel closer.

Good luck.


FibroGal - May 20

I'm really sorry to hear and can honestly say I can relate. Talk to her with a compassionate heart. Tell her you love her and eant her, that you miss the intuimacy and acknowledge that she may miss it too. Remember that she may be feeling discouraged and frustrated with her condition. Reassure her its not her fault. Ask her what feels good for her and about the timing. Would any certain time be better than another? Remember, too, that fibro can cause sexual pain. Giver her the message that she can trust you to be honest about what she experiences. Communication is really key. And remember neither of you are at fault for her condition. Be of good courage: You can get through this


chrissy1956 - May 23

I'm new to this forum and this report was the first one I saw and felt I had to reply to.

My husband has a high sex drive and I have fibro,not a good combination!!

You need to be very patient with your wife and if you love her enough then you will be.

You have to understand more about the fibro,sleep deprivation,pain,depression which all multiplies without an understanding partner.I've felt so desperate sometimes I 've just wanted to give up totally but then I'll get a day thats not so bad.

My Doctor best described Fibro,she said she calls it the invisable torturer.I'm just trying to make you understand how bad your wife will feel sometimes.

So what do you do to solve the intimate side of your marriage?
First be MUCH more understanding.
We both got used to when I have a bad flare up and then everything is too painful and I'm to worn down.
When I'm having a not so bad day we make the most of it.
I think without the understanding your wife will see it as a chore and that you don't care.I don't mean for one minute you don't care but my husband must have felt the same as you but he treated me with consideration and lots of cuddles till we became intimate again so we didn't drift apart as I think you and your wife are.

I don't know how long you've been married but we've been married 30 years,in sickness and in health as the vow goes.

You need to ask yourself a question.If it were you with this condition and your wife was fit and healthy,how would you expect her to be with you?


axxie - May 23


I hope with all the information we have posted that you have an indication of how bad your wife feels most days.

I have been with my husband for over 25 years, went through cancer of the ovaries and lymphe nodes and we are still together, so my husband has to be very understanding, he took me in his arms, and told me whatever happens he be near me no mater what. We've lived separation because my hubby is military and when he was home he would take me in his arms and tell me that he loved me and that if cuddling was the only thing then he would take this because there was no other women he wanted.

Those special little words where more then enough to want to get better in a hurry. Compasation and you will see your wife without the want or your need will want to love you more and I guarantee you she will give you in return all her love.

I hope the new doctor will be able to help you, if you would like to know I'm on Cymbalta 60mg, and I have to tell you after 6 months, I can take walks with my husband for 2 hours as long as we take the pace of window shopping.

For sleep trazadone 1/2 a tablet and I'm doing fine.

I am hoping for you and your wife that her symptoms disapear and that you can enjoy your wife and that she can enjoy you.

Just remember easy does it and yes, when things are complicated there is always a rainbow at the end of those trying times.


a_pough - May 25

I understand your frustrations and I am sure your wife is frustrated as well. I agree with Fantod when he/she stated that this illness is like flu pain. That is how I described to my husband for years. We went through a similar period in our marriage, but he was very patient and supportive and I began to manage the symptoms better. We are doing better in the intimacy department now, and I am sure that you will too. This is just the "...through sickness and health..." part!


Stalvan - May 31

Thank you everyone for your replies. I have read all of them and will share this with my wife. I will do my part, I just want her to get better and our lives to get back to semi-normal. Sucks feeling helpless because there is nothing I can do to help her but try and be understanding. Thanx again for all the replies!!!


ghostman - September 22

remember that a marriage is not just about the intercourse what she is going through right now feels like a 10000 needles sticking her to the bone at all times and no rest all adds up and is very stressful support her in all she does and help her it may not be as often but when you can be intimate with each other it will be special dont put to much pressure on her to be intimate either it adds to the stess and can take longer \


nikita3 - September 23

Like others have said, I think the key is to help her to feel better about herself. Give her compliments and tell her you love her. Make her feel as if there is no-one else and that she can do anything she puts her mind to. When she feels better about herself, she may be able to push past the pain and the fatigue.

I am in the same position as she is with fibromyalgia and a non-existent libido. I'm sure that how I feel about myself is playing a huge part in that. I notice that when my partner spends time just cuddling me or he says something nice, I feel so much better and I can look past the symptoms and get on with what I have to do. It helps to stop my constant thoughts about my illness and how I'm not doing enough around the house etc.

On the contrary, when he occasionally jokes about us not having sex anymore, it just adds another burden, another thing to think that I'm not doing well enough. I know he is only joking, but it still adds to the negative self-talk.

At the same time, I know that feeling good about onself isn't the responsibility of anyone else but yourself. So even though it is nice to recieve encouragement and support from those around us, it is up to us in the end to do things to increase our own self worth and self esteem. It may even be an idea to do some research on self esteem and perhaps help your partner with putting herself first and doing nice things for herself if she is in the habit of foregoing that all the time for the benefit of others.


tikihut - June 8

My husband didn't respond the way nikita3's husband did. Mine cheated on me which caused an even bigger gap that I call the Great Divide. Please don't do that to her if it ever crosses your mind. I'm sure she if feeling very alone and helpless.

It will hinder your relationship in so many ways and tear your family apart. She needs love and compassion. Isn't that what love is all about?

Needless to say, now that I feel better, (thanks to a medicine that my doctor and I found by accident) My husband and I are worlds apart. When I try to talk to him about anything it seems we disagree on everything. Yes we're still together, but it's because we've been married for 23 years and I'm too tired to deal with a divorce.


kvc33 - June 17

I'm sorry to hear about your sad situation. I would guess that you disagree on everything because you are angry with each other about what happened and that makes any communication difficult. Please try to understand why your husband did what he did. I don't know the circumstances but I would imagine there was more to it than just the fact that he missed having sex. The cheater has just as many feelings and needs as the betrayed, but they know they did something wrong and they have to live with guilt as well. The guilt makes them feel angry because they don't think they should be labeled as the bad guy just for trying to get their needs met. Please understand that I am not judging either one of you. What I'm saying is that if you want to bridge the gap you will have to work on mutual understanding and forgiveness. I don't know how long ago it happened but if you haven't worked through the negative feelings yet please go and see a counselor where you can talk it over and decide what direction to take. Whether or not you choose to heal your marriage is up to you but I would recommend it since you aren't wanting to leave. If you both can get to a place where you don't blame each other any more then you have a chance to live peacefully.


conniehurts - September 1

You married her " in sickness and in health" and hopefully because you love her. I have suffered from severe fms for years and its hard to come up with the energy to make love. Believe me it is as hard on me as my hubby. We went from an extremely active sex life to almost none. It makes me feel like I am being less than the wife I should be. My hubbys answer to this is as long as we can cuddle (sometimes even that is very hard to do too) we are ok. He would love to have more sex, as would I, but we don't always get what we want in this life. Sex is a very small part of a good marriage and sadly a huge part of a bad one. Because he supports me unconditionally I try very hard to satisfy him at least once a month even when it means that I am in more pain for days afterwards. The problem most likely isn't that she doesn't want any sex but that her pain and energy levels don't allow it. I take strong opiates (duragesic and dilaudid) for pain and try to take one about 30 minutes before bed, it helps the pain but sadly decreases my own pleasure. We do our best and I let him know that if I could I would! I leave little things like housework undone so that I can have a little energy for the things we want to do together. The house will be there for someone to clean when the time comes. Love and support her as much as possible and I would bet that she will do her best to satisfy you when she can! Peace Connie



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