caret icon Back to all discussions

Living with HIV and low sex drive, am I alone?

I am 51 years old and positive for over 23 years. I have for the most part remained undetectable with cd4 count around 350 and sometime goes up to 450. My other numbers such as creatine, etc, are always elevated and cholesterol is always high even though I eat healthy and work out and run nearly every day. In addition, about a year ago I was diagnosed with high blood pressure and put on a beta blocker called Metoprolol Tartrate. I have been in a committed relationship for 17 years with a partner who is not positive. We have always has a very good sex life having sex at least once a week. Over the last couple of years, it's become harder for me to get and maintain an erection and over this past year my sex drive has become non existent. It has created so much anxiety for me do the point I dread my partner making a move for fear I will not be aroused and I'll have to turn him down again. We had sex two nights ago and I had hoped it would have reset my fear meter, but I cannot let go of the anxiety. He and I have had several conversations and he is committed to being patient. I really need to hear from other men that I am not alone. Does anyone else experience this?

  1. These are really good questions. I wonder if anyone on our advocate team can chime in with some support or information here: - Liz (Team Member)

    1. Hi , thank you for sharing and for asking a question around such an important topic. Discussing things like this helps others realize they are not alone (because I'm certain you're not in this case!). While you're waiting for others to respond, I wanted to ask one quick thing. Have you talked with your doctor at all about this? I know if can be challenging or uncomfortable depending on how close you are with your doctor, however, sometimes certain drugs (like beta blockers) can cause sexual-related side effects. I'm wondering if this or any other meds you might be taking are playing a role in this situation? We're not medical professionals here, so we can't give out medical advice, however, this may be a good question for you and your doctor to explore if you're open to it! Just thinking out loud! -Casey (Team Member)

      1. Hi Casey and thank you for your comment. Yes, I have discussed this with my doctor since making this post. I am weaning off the beta blocker and going on a plain bp medication. He told me my drive is normal for a 51 year old male in 17 year relationship with hiv and high blood pressure and that my partner most likely has a higher level of testosterone and that my physiology is compromised from long term hiv in addition to state 2 renal impairment and high bp. He made me feel a great deal better and expressed that many of his patient are in similar boats and experience exactly what i'm going through. My partner and I just have to be patient and accept a new normal, less frequent sex life. I'm still fighting the anxiety but it is getting better day by day.


        Thank you

        1. I'm glad to hear you got some clarity from your doctor. Best of luck to you and your partner. If you find anything useful along the way, feel free to share here because like you said, there are so many in the same boat. Thanks again for opening this conversation. - Liz (Team Member)

        2. Hi , I know others have responded as well, but I just wanted to jump in, too! I'm glad you were able to work with your doctor and make some adjustments and get some reassurance. As you can see from this thread alone, you are not on an island! Others are definitely in a similar situation. Please feel free to reach out anytime you need to talk. You can find support and encouragement here! Thinking of you! -Casey (Team Member)

      2. Alafia (Peace) You are not alone. I have been living with HIV for 33 years now but I attribute my low sex drive to my mental health meds. It seems the longer I am on them the lower my drive is becoming. It sucks. Khafre (H-I-V.net Team Member)

        or create an account to reply.