The Negative Effects of Low Testosterone on Marriages and Relationships

 

The Experiment

Let's take an adult male with a good testosterone level of 600+ ng/dl and lower it with an anti-androgen. A big percentage of men will start to feel the drop in their testosterone when they hit the 400's.  As they hit the 300's, anxiety, mild depression and brain fog will probably start to set in.  They'll notice their libido tanks significantly and perhaps he experiences the beginnings of erectile dysfunction.  Morning erections will become less hard and more infrequent, often leading to venous leakage.  They may also suffer from anemia, fatigue, and disturbed sleep.  Often their working and verbal memory will suffer and they will notice physical and cognitive performance decreases at work. Some of the men will have low estradiol levels, their joints will hurt, and they will experience night sweats.

So, tell me how a guy is supposed to maintain a physically and emotionally productive marriage with all of these factors occurring at once?  Sure, the wife may stay with him if she's a Gandhi sort of woman.  But many won't.  Furthermore, many women do not understand that it is hormonal.  They take it personally and assume the lack of physical and emotional interest is because of them.

This is why the typical response of endocrinologists to not treat low testosterone is unprofessional and cruel.  Besides the fact that low testosterone increases the risk for many nasty medical conditions, such as diabetes and hardening of the arteries, low testosterone will rip apart or at least jeopardize many committed relationships and marriages. Making matters worse are the unbelievably toxic responses that many endocrinologists tell their low T patients. In other words, there are a multitude of stories where medical doctors have recommended to men suffering with very low testosterone that they should experiment with sex toys or go to a sex therapist or "get some counseling!"."

And it's not always medical doctors.  Our society has a very strong bias against testosterone, not realizing that testosterone is part of the glue that holds relationships together in men that want to be committed.  Now I admit that higher testosterone men have been shown in some studies to be less faithful.  However, my point is this:  A large percentage of men do not want to engage in infidelity and promiscuity but want to make their marriages and relationships work in the long term.  Low testosterone can rip all of that apart.  And, yes, testosterone could be a used as a tool implemented at specific times for the singles, multiple partner lifestyles, but testosterone replacement therapy (HRT) can also be utilized just as easily to greatly improve and maintain a committed, lasting relationship.

Here is a fantastic quote by an HRT user that highlights and underscores the immense value of testosterone in relation to relationship and marriage:

If this was a women's health issue there would be a national organization fundraising for a cure and awareness campaign. I agree with this 100%! It's sad, I think a lot of midlife crises and ruined marriages are a result of low T. I think a lot of "depression" is really low T and the pills obfuscate the problem resulting in all sorts of issues and early death. This is why I'm happy to share of my story with just about anyone that will listen - if I can help one guy recognize the signs early enough and seek help, that's a huge win. If someone had educated me, the last 5 years of my life would have been very different...

As I have pointed out in other pages, study after study has shown that lower testosterone males are prone to increased levels of aggressive and more likely to be antagonistic, combatant, and engage in violent conflict.  Why?  They feel more anxious and more on edge.

NOTE:  Statistically you may know that marriage lowers testosterone. Of course, if your ultimate goal is to maximize testosterone, then a guy would conclude that marriage is not a desirable solution. However, most men feel that taking a slightly lower testosterone level is worth the risk for a meaningful and enduring relationship.

Five Reasons that Low Testosterone Rips Apart Relationships and Marriage

1. Women assume erectile dysfunction (ED) is due to boredom with them.  If a guy can't get an erection, the women immediately assume, "It's me!"  Of course, the poor guy just needs some sympathy, but instead finds that he's deeply hurt his wife or partner's feelings.  It can create a vicious circle and is something that really requires a lot of communication.  However, many men are weak (or embarrassed) about discussing the subject, and the woman walks away thinking her man is just not interested any more.

For example, men often claim that when signs of ED during relations emerge, the woman often thinks the issue is related to her and the man thinks it is his fault until blood work is completed. After the lab results are disclosed and the hormonal levels addressed, the relationship issues appear to resolve themselves.

CAUTION:  HRT is not for everyone.  There are some patients with clotting disorders, kidney issues, hypertension, and certain other medical conditions where it may not be appropriate.  Discuss with your physician.

2. Women take low libido personally. One HRT user noted that that his close friends that were in a long-term relationship split up due to the man's complete lack of sexual interest.  Once again guys, a guy who has low libido due to low testosterone will very likely be apathetic, anxious, depressed, and about as romantic as a rock.  How long can one's partner handle that?

Here is a quote from a concerned man discussing a friend’s marital struggle:

Our good friends are going to split and it is my guess that the underlying cause is due to low T. The husband went to my doc and was given Axiron and has not used it. They are just so far gone that it is too late for them. The wife is miserable after many years and  wants a shot at happiness. The husband seems very foggy all the time. They have not had a sex life for many years. It's just a mess. Very unfortunate...I had a confidential  conversation with him last year and found out that he has basically no sex drive. I told him about my experiences and how the pellets really turned things around for me. He did see my doc, but I didn't want to be overly nosy, etc. He never brought it up again. His wife told my wife that things are bad and that he didn't apply the Axiron, etc. She is just  done. Think it's too late for them.

3. Low T impacts the mental and emotional. Just to drive the point home, one man wrote in who had not developed erectile dysfunction yet from the low testosterone.  However, low testosterone levels really impact brain function, and this guy said this is what tore apart his marriage of 14 years:

I've had low T for about 8-10 yrs that I know of. I guess I put my head in the sand about   my condition trying only the gel treatment only for a short amount of time. So let’s say I have not done anything since that but maybe take a few supplements here and there. I'm at the point in my life that my wife of 14 yrs wants to call it quits in our marriage. I have all the emotional traits that come with having this except ED. Need help.

4. Guess what? Sex is important to women, too!  A number of men have commented that the improved sex life has greatly improved their marriage.  There are many reasons for this, but one of the important reasons is that the post-orgasm sensation and subsequent mood increases bonding.  This is very important for men and critical for women.  And women need the increases in dopamine, serotonin, and other post-orgasm neurotransmitters just like guys do.  Consider what one man wrote about his experience with testosterone and intimacy:

As many of you who regularly know, I'm a proponent of testosterone supplemention via Testopel pellets. I have progressed over a two year period from barely being a sexual entity to now having sex as a regular/frequent mainstay in my life. My marriage has benefitted from our newly found intimacy (though not so new anymore - meaning it is still great but isn't new anymore) and things are just going well...Even though we are a bit older, I got a vasectomy over a year ago as she is not through her changes yet so this combined with the Testopel has made sex unbelievable.

5. It helps you look and feel better.  Only guys care about appearance, right?  Wrong!  Women are very powerfully attracted to a good physique, and a poor male physique that consists of a chubby belly, flaky skin tone, and flat butt will turn off a woman in the same way a male is turned off by an unkept appearance, excessive complaining, and lack of femininity.  And, respectable testosterone levels can make a significant difference with both one's workouts and weight loss program.  For example, if you are low T, you just don't feel like going to the gym.  You're often tired, anxious, and slow to recover.  In addition, many studies show that HRT will lead to modest weight loss.  No, it's not a panacea, but it helps. And, yes, testosterone activates the mTOR pathway, which accelerates muscle gains.  Look at what this man wrote about "letting himself go" in these categories:

My wife of 13 years was cultivating friendships online and was planning encounters of the sexual kind including some old sex partners. When I found out it kind of jolted me. I really took a look at who I WAS. I am a great guy but I was letting myself go physically and dropping the intimacy. We were like roommates. I think she was going through some hard times also of just not feeling for sex. But those feelings of not wanting sex were just   plain boredom of me and eventually she made that realization. That's when she started with the conversations. I said to myself OK I can't stop feelings that my woman has for  someone else but I can make MYSELF the best I can be. So I started exercising and eating right and researching Low T after getting a low reading. She has decided she likes what she sees and does not want to throw it away. I have been doing my part in the bedroom and making it real interesting. I have lost about 45 lbs and still on my quest to lose more.

Wrap-Up Advice

My advice to all males over 35-years of age experiencing biological, psychological, social, or sexual issues, concerns, and/or challenges impacting an otherwise healthy marriage, such as those related to low sex drive, erectile dysfunction, low semen volume, chronic fatigue, loss of muscle mass, increased body fat, and irregular mood fluctuations or changes, get tested today.  Gentlemen, don’t let frustration, a lack of sexual intimacy, or betrayal ruin your most endearing friendship, relationship, and life partnership.

Stay Strong,

Brett Place

References for this article include:

www.peaktestosterone.com