I Want You To Want Me

January 13,2022

We all want to feel desired, but so often in relationships we get into a place where it feels like one partner wants the other more.

If you’re the higher desire partner, you’re probably feeling lonely and scared – scared that your partner might not be into you, and scared that you’ll get rejected if you initiate any kind of sex or intimacy. In fact, you may even be withholding affection for fear of being turned down!

If you’re the lower desire partner, you might be feeling ashamed, like there’s something wrong with you. You may even be tempted to start giving your partner half-hearted sex or intimacy in an attempt to appease them.

Unfortunately, none of these techniques end up being very successful, and in fact tend to only reinforce the feeling of imbalance.

In this episode, we’re going to talk to the partner who wants to feel desired, and the partner who may not feel that desire. You’ll learn:

Here’s a glance at this episode:

[00:55] Xander’s Wrong Lyrics Karaoke returns

[01:38] The inspiration behind this episode

[10:51] You know we had to do some Instagram polls — learn how our audience feels about desire

[12:45] Vanessa shares how wanting to be wanted can feel shameful and embarrassing

[15:40] Xander responds (with a voice crack) and shares times when the tables have been turned

[21:32] What does it actually feel like to be wanted?

[24:12] Our best advice for the higher desire partner

[33:12] How to identify what specific, concrete things make you feel desired. We share some ideas if you’re stuck on this question

[38:15] Advice for the partner who doesn’t feel the desire

[43:22] Are you responsible for meeting all your partners sexual needs?

[45:00] What to do if you’re NOT feeling desire for your partner

[50:00] Listener Question: “How do I phrase what I want or need without coming off as critical or that my partner is failing?”

[52:25] Listener Question: “What do you do if you specifically ask for what you need to feel desired and they just don’t do it? I’ve clarified and reinforced but it just doesn’t happen. I’m convinced he just doesn’t want me.”

[54:59] Listener Question: “Is this all just in our heads? Is it just us not feeling desirable and not that our partner doesn’t want us?”

Links & resources

Also listen on


How Much Sex Should You Really Be Having?


You'll receive instant access to this guide and ongoing free tips from me on how to have an amazing sex life. Your privacy is important to me. Your information will be kept completely confidential, and you can unsubscribe anytime.


I'm Vanessa Marin, a sex therapist and writer specializing in helping you have more fun in the bedroom.

I have bachelor’s degrees in human sexuality and sociology from Brown University, and a master’s degree in counseling psychology from the California Institute of Integral Studies. I’m also a licensed psychotherapist. I’ve been working in the sex therapy field since 2002 and have been featured by The New York Times, O: The Oprah Magazine, Real Simple, and many more.

If you’re interested in improving your sex life, you can work with me via my online courses or personal coaching sessions. I look forward to supporting you in creating the sex life you’ve always wanted!