What to Do If You're Not Attracted to Your Partner Anymore

adult couple in bedroom, having disagreement

Kris Ubach and Quim Roser/Image Source/Getty

The early stages of relationships are typically characterized by attraction and chemistry that bring partners together. Over time however, it’s natural for some of the attraction to change or fade.

If lately you haven't been feeling as attracted to your partner, you may wonder why you’re feeling this way and what to do about it.

This article explores the role of attraction in relationships, reasons why attraction may fade, and some steps you can take if you’re feeling this way, such as improving your communication, prioritizing time together, and focusing on the positives in your relationship.

The Role of Attraction in Relationships


Attraction is a reaction to a combination of physical, mental, emotional, and intellectual elements we find desirable in others, says Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD, a clinical psychologist and professor at Yeshiva University.

According to Dr. Romanoff, attraction serves as the link for many types of affection between partners, which may manifest itself through various forms, such as:

  • Verbal expressions, which include words of love, encouragement, and appreciation 
  • Physical contact, which includes cuddling, hugging, holding hands, and physical intimacy
  • Quality time, which includes spending time together and doing activities together
  • Acts of service, which involve doing helpful and thoughtful things for one another
  • Gifts, which involve giving one another personalized, meaningful, or valuable gifts

Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD

Without attraction, many of these types of connections do not occur.

— Sabrina Romanoff, PsyD

Reasons Why Attraction May Fade

Below, Dr. Romanoff lists some of the reasons why attraction may fade over time:

  • Predictability can lead to boredom: Long-term relationships tend to have an element of boredom. As the novelty and excitement of the relationship wear off and safety and stability set in, predictability can turn into boredom. This can cause you to feel less interested in your partner.
  • Physical attraction can fade: Over time, you may no longer find your partner physically attractive anymore. This could happen if you lose the chemistry that existed between the two of you. Or, you may feel unattracted to changes in their body or appearance.
  • Romance may take a backseat: You and your partner may have settled into your daily routine together and gotten very comfortable with each other. Though you may have a high degree of intimacy in terms of your connection, you might not have time for romance.
  • Conflicts can create distance: Conflicts in the relationship can lead to anger, resentment, broken communication, and distance if they’re left unresolved. Conflict can stem from many causes, including finances, parenting decisions, division of responsibilities, or infidelity.

What to Do If You Feel This Way

Dr. Romanoff suggests some steps you can take, if lately you haven’t been feeling attracted to your partner anymore:

Try to work out the cause

Try to understand the origins or the cause behind the lack of attraction. Remember, the cause may be physical or emotional. Try to identify what caused this feeling the first time and pay attention to what triggers it when you’re with your partner, so you can work through it if possible. Alternatively, think about what originally made you attracted to your partner and consider what changed.

It may also be helpful to reflect on what you may be wanting or needing from your partner that you are not receiving.

Communicate with your partner

Once you have an understanding of what is wrong or missing, open up communication with your partner about the issue and the potential causes you’ve identified. Try to discuss it with your partner through a solution-focused approach. It’s important to have this conversation respectfully, without criticizing or blaming your partner, but by sharing how you feel and asking for what you want directly.

Practice active listening

During your discussions with your partner, make it a point to hear their side of things as well. For instance, they may feel that their efforts often went unreciprocated, so they stopped trying. In addition to asking for what you want, it’s important to ask what they need from you, too.

Put some effort into the relationship

Be the change you wish to see. If you want more fun, excitement, or romance in the relationship, actively take steps to bring those elements into your relationship. Take the first step yourself to initiate what you want to experience, instead of waiting for your partner to begin.

Practice doing so from a place of love and care, without unspoken expectations, bitterness, or resentment. Notice how it feels to invite your partner to join you in what you want to share with them.

Prioritize time together

Prioritize spending time with your partner, whether it’s to do things you both enjoy, discover new interests together, or simply hang out together.

Focus on the positives

Once negative thinking sets in, it can take over and make it hard for you to appreciate the positive aspects of your partner and your relationship. It’s important to change this pattern by actively making an effort to recognize your partner's positive qualities. You can try keeping a gratitude journal where you write down one thing you appreciate about your partner or your relationship every day.

Avoid comparisons

Every relationship dynamic is unique. Rather than comparing your relationship with others’, focus on what makes yours special.

Speak to a therapist

If you're unsure of how to cope with your feelings or what to do next, it may be helpful to see a therapist. Furthermore, if your partner is open to it, couples therapy can help you address issues in the relationship, improve your communication with each other, and work on solutions together.

A Word From Verywell

When you first meet someone, there are lots of sparks and everything feels new and exciting. However, over time, as you become more committed to each other, settle into a daily routine, and get busy with life, things may start to feel a little dull and monotonous. All these factors can contribute to the lack of attraction to your partner.

If you can identify what is causing this feeling, talk to your partner about it and tell them what you need from them. It’s also important to ask your partner what they need from you. Start making more of an effort toward your relationship and make it a point to appreciate your partner’s positive attributes.

If things don’t improve, it may be helpful to visit a therapist, either by yourself or as a couple, to find solutions and figure out what to do next.

3 Sources
Verywell Mind uses only high-quality sources, including peer-reviewed studies, to support the facts within our articles. Read our editorial process to learn more about how we fact-check and keep our content accurate, reliable, and trustworthy.
  1. Tobore TO. Towards a comprehensive theory of love: The quadruple theory. Front Psychol. 2020;11:862. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00862

  2. Song H, Zhang Y, Zuo L, et al. Improving relationships by elevating positive illusion and the underlying psychological and neural mechanisms. Front Hum Neurosci. 2019;12:526. doi:10.3389/fnhum.2018.00526

  3. Mostova O, Stolarski M, Matthews G. I love the way you love me: Responding to partner's love language preferences boosts satisfaction in romantic heterosexual couples. PLoS One. 2022;17(6):e0269429. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0269429

By Sanjana Gupta
Sanjana is a health writer and editor. Her work spans various health-related topics, including mental health, fitness, nutrition, and wellness.