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30-second therapist: Is a bad sex life license to cheat?

Need a quick answer to a relationship dilemma? Relationship expert Dr. Gilda Carle cuts through the fluff with her relationship advice in TODAY.com’s “30-second therapist” series.Q. I'm 46 and my wife of 13 years is 39. When we first met, the sex was great, and she was fun to be around. I make six figures and can easily support us, but my wife wants to work full-time. We have two sons, 8 and
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Need a quick answer to a relationship dilemma? Relationship expert Dr. Gilda Carle cuts through the fluff with her relationship advice in TODAY.com’s “30-second therapist” series.

Q. I'm 46 and my wife of 13 years is 39. When we first met, the sex was great, and she was fun to be around. I make six figures and can easily support us, but my wife wants to work full-time. We have two sons, 8 and 11. We have a maid, gardener, and my mom to baby-sit when we need her. My wife is always stressed and tired, and sex is horrible, rushed and infrequent. She's never in the mood and she's always stressed. She has been seeing a therapist, but nothing’s changed. I go outside the marriage for (safe) sex on a regular basis. I don't want to destroy my kids’ lives and cause problems, but I need sex. My wife appears to know, although I deny it. When we do have sex, it's great. But my needs aren’t being met due to its infrequency. I have gotten on her about following up with her stress problem and low sex drive. She was on medication recently, but went off it.

I love my wife very, very much and am still very sexually attracted to her. I generally touch her so much she gets sick of it, and she is not interested in being affectionate. Am I doing the right thing by doing things this way? —Starving for Sex

Dear Starving,

You say, “Sex is horrible, rushed and infrequent,” and you also say, “When we do have sex, it's great.” Make up your mind, man! You blame your wife’s disinterest in sex on a job YOU don’t think she needs since YOU’RE such a superb wage earner. And when you don’t get your way, you grab her “so much she gets sick of it.” Then you’re on her case about her stress and low sex drive?

You ask whether you’re using the right approach. Duh! You’ll never get affection by bullying and cheating.

Research says working women are stressed because of guilt they feel from leaving their families. Do you suffer guilt when you’re tucked in elsewhere? Try supporting your wife’s efforts! Sir, when you reinforce her dreams, maybe then she’ll reinforce yours! —Dr. Gilda

Q: My boyfriend and I have been dating for a year and a half. We graduated from college seven months ago, and moved into apartments a block away from each other. At school, we saw each other every day. Now, although he only has a part-time job, he says he can spend just one day a week with me. When we’re not together, he’s sitting at home alone or he’s out with his friends. When we do get together, he’s grumpy and tired. I confronted him about whether he wants to stay in the relationship. He says he loves me and wants us to spend our lives together. Should I believe him and continue to wait?  —Longing for More

Dear Longing,

While you’re whining about your boyfriend’s lackluster loving, he actually seems to be depressed. Many college grads think a diploma entitles them to an instant career. School is out, and YOU are no longer your guy’s priority. Right now, he needs to find his way in the world! Most guys want to feel successful before they commit their heart, while women make love their sole goal. Pressuring your man for “me time” will only push him away.

What have YOU been doing during the last seven months? Hanging with boyfriend is NOT a career destination! This dude may or may not be there for the long haul, but no matter what, you must be able to sustain yourself. Girl, stop haggling over face time, and start building YOUR future now! —Dr. Gilda

Do you agree with Dr. Gilda’s advice? Do you have your own? Share it in the comments below.

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Dr. Gilda Carle  is the relationship expert to the stars. She is a professor at New York’s Mercy College and has written 15 books; her latest is “Don’t Bet on the Prince!”