Is your sex life well heated and properly insulated?

September 15, 2012

in Marriage Killer, Sexuality

This post is a bit unusual as it is aimed at wives – something I almost never do. However, it is a natural follow up on my last two posts, and given my posts show up on The Marriage Bed facebook page and are tweeted by various members of the CMBA, I have confidence more than a few ladies will see this.

Couple kissing in the cold | freedigitalphotos.netAs this may be read by some who do not know me, let me share my “credentials” relative to what follows. When my bride and I married almost twenty-eight years ago, we had significant problems due to my past porn use (it really was in the past and stayed that way) and her past abuse (which did not stay in the past in some ways). I know what it is like to live in a low sex marriage. That said, I never cheated (I’ve seen what cheating does and I’d sooner have cut it off), I didn’t look at porn, (really, and for much the same reason as not cheating) and my bride would tell you I remained a loving and attentive husband despite the sexual problems (I say I could have done better). It took years, but now we have a great sex life; I have no complaints. In other words, nothing below is said to justify some sin I committed, nor is it me expressing frustration over my current situation.

A healthy and safe sex life requires regular heat and good insulation. If you fail to have both of these, his heart will run cold and he will be open to all manner of temptations. The temptations he faces are not just sexual; sexual frustration and lack leave a man open mentally, emotionally, and spiritually, making all manner of sins seem just a bit less horrible, or even a bit nicer. This in no way justifies or excuses any sin he may choose to commit, but based on Jesus’ warning about causing another to sin (Mat 18:6), you may be held accountable for your part in making the temptation greater. (And yes, I know about 15% of women are the ones being told no. Some of the following is the same for you, some is not.)

How do you heat and insulate his sex life?

  • Frequency: Yes, this is obvious – and often discounted. Sex is important to men for a number of reasons, including physical, mental, and emotional. He has a drive. Some women do not have a sex drive, and those who do usually have a weaker drive.  Going more than a few days without sex messes with his body and his mind. Telling him this is not so is like him telling you menstruation is no big deal or labour does not hurt.
  • Frequency – part two: You may be having less sex than you think. If you ask wives how often they have sex with their husbands, the majority will give an answer higher than the reality. Women in low sex marriages (where they are the reason) are even more likely to answer high, and to miss reality by more. Generally, this is not a matter of dishonesty, but of inaccurately remembering. If you doubt this, keep track for a while, odds are you do it less often than you think. Please know saying “It’s only been a few days” when it’s been six days, and ten before that, only makes it worse for your husband; he feels disrespected, unloved, AND lied to.
  • Variety: Not every kinky thing he can think of, but something more than the usual two ways you have sex. This can also mean finding ways of giving him the frequency he wants without having to have “full sex” when you have no interest. Learn to do him by hand, and occasionally start doing it without asking first. Some men who are making noise about wanting more sex really want more variety, and they may even know it is variety they are craving
  • Let him see you naked: He really does not care about your cellulite, wrinkles, sagging, or whatever else you see in the mirror – because those things are not what he sees when he sees you naked. He sees the woman he loves, and he likes what he sees because he loves you. He sees the only naked female body he is “allowed” to see and enjoy. If you deny or limit his seeing you naked, his God given hunger to see female body parts is left unfulfilled, which increases temptation for him. Even if you have plenty of sex, if you always do it in the dark you are not giving him what he wants and needs.
  • Let him play with your bits: He wants to see them, and he wants to enjoy them. He wants to explore, and he wants to do it often. Teach him not to be too rough or abrupt – he can learn. He likes your body, let him enjoy it!
  • Be enthusiastic: Unless he is desperate for sex, he wants more than just you lying there waiting for him to finish. He wants you to be an active part of sex, and if you are not he cannot be fulfilled. He wants more than sex; he wants you to be sexual.
  • Initiate: Nothing says “I love you” like initiating sex – and he needs it. Even if you can only “initiate” by coming to bed naked, or you leaving a note on the bathroom mirror, do something to tell him you want and desire him sexually. I have talked to men whose wife never refused them who had affairs because some women actually asked them for sex. Yes, those men sinned, but their wives put them in a place of being easily tempted. Wanting a man sexually is a very powerful thing.
  • Climax regularly: A big part of his enjoying sex is you enjoying sex. I know may be times you cannot, times you do not want to, and times it will take far longer than you think is reasonable, but if he is the only one climaxing most of the time he is feeling cheated. Most men will gladly spend more time if it means their wife has a climax.
  • Bracket times of low sex: If you know you will not be able or available for a while, try to give him a bit of extra before and/or after. Before is especially helpful, and twice in a row after a break helps him and makes him feel good about you. Along these lines, if a man goes a while without sex, a single climax does not wipe out the built-up sexual tension. The wife who understands this, and deals with it, blesses her husband greatly. More sex before or after a time without shows him you understand and care about his sexuality.
  • Encourage him to do something when you can’t: No, a few days without it not going to kill him, and if you are having plenty of sex it’s not going to turn him into a raving sex starved monster. However, going longer than usual does have negative effects on him. Many men have told me they like how easy it is to avoid lust when they have regular sex, and how frustrating it is to have to battle lust when there is a break in sex. Yes, this is part of being a man, and we need to learn to deal with it, but you can choose to make it a lot easier by inviting him to take care of himself when you cannot. Ideally, this means while you are lying there with him – or on the phone telling him what you would like to be doing. Yes, I am talking about masturbation – if that is something you just cannot deal with, I understand … but your husband many not. Telling him you want him to take care of himself when you cannot makes him think you are the best wife in the world.

If you are still with me, ladies, please accept my apologies for how hard this comes across. I can assure you I will receive comments and emails from men wanting to know how to get their wife to just read this, much less do any of it. Many men are sexually frustrated, and have been for years and years. The amount of sex they have with their wife is so little they never feel satisfied. They feel unloved – how could she do this if she loved them? I believe most women do not understand – they have been fed a lot of lies and half-truths about sex and men, and they honestly do not get it.

As I said, I have nothing to gain from saying this. I am sharing in hopes some wives will think maybe there is some truth to this, and will make changes that will deeply bless their husband and possibly start something that fundamentally changes their marriage. For most men sex is a critical need, and if it is not being dealt with well your marriage is both at risk and far from what God intended it to be.

Finally, ladies, often get accused of beating up on husbands on this blog. The rest of the time, I encourage them to be the kind of man you want your husband to be. If your guy is not reading this blog, maybe this post is the way to get him to start. This would be especially true if you start heating and insulating your sex life better and “blame” this post.

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36 comments
soinlove
soinlove

I am a wife who can testify to all of this being true. My husband and I had many years with little sex due to my health problems and other issues as well. One of those being lies I believed about sex. Over the last two years, our marriage has transformed. We started reading blogs like this one and The Marriage Bed, etc. I can't urge wives enough how this WILL change your life.

landschooner
landschooner

@Pearl : " Like translating Greek into English, I translate ‘male’ into ‘female.’ :) " That's awesome! : ) LS

RHL
RHL

You've concisely put in words the sexual frustration I've lived for most of our 23 years of marriage. Thank-you Paul. You give me hope and assurance that I'm not over-sexed. I simply desire my wife.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Pearl - Thanks for that! I love your story, and what you are doing to help others have a similar story. When is that male female dictionary going to be available?

Pearl
Pearl

If Paul doesn't object, I'll give a little personal testimony. I am a low libido wife. It took years and a great marriage class for ME to understand at a heart level about my husband's sexual need. However, on the flip side, it took HIM years and a great marriage class to understand my need for emotional nakedness and conversation. Praying together, out loud, allowed God to work on both of our hearts. Anyway, there is HOPE for low libido wives to be renovated. I try to talk to wives about this and sometimes feel like a translator. Like translating Greek into English, I translate 'male' into 'female.' :)

John Doe
John Doe

Hi Paul - Thanks for what you do on this site. My question for you is how are we to get our wives to read this post without it seeming heavy handed? Your site is typically geared for men, while your wife's site is for our partner. I know that this post could apply to either gender but I would say the most common would be that wives have the lower drive. Have you and your wife ever considered guest posting on the other's site? I think this post would be very helpful for a both members of the marriage union to consider, but it may cover more ground if the material comes to both of our inbox from a third party? So on topics like this perhaps it would be helpful to tandem post between the two? I saw where your wife referenced it, but I dont that is really as effective as the main post thread. Just wanted to share this thought with you for consideration. Thanks for your labors.

Nate
Nate

Thanks for the quick reply. I just think that asking the low drive partner to meet needs... well sucks. It has killed my confidence knowing the my wife does not want me physically, but rather has sex as a favor.

Nate
Nate

I am normally a reader, but feel the need to chime in. I am a sex starved husband as many are. I often have to practically beg for sex. Its been this way for years... when we do have sex, she barely touches or kisses me. Its the same routine everytime. I give oral she lays there and then we have sex. Only likes missionary and doesn't move. I hate to beg for it as I believe that people will generally find a way to do what they ultimately want. I feel this means that sex is a favor for her to give and not what she actually wants. I like your blog, but this post makes me think that one partner not wanting sex is normal for married life. Is this accurate?

landschooner
landschooner

Great post Paul! Thanks for all that you and Lori do! LS

Brit
Brit

Another higher drive wife, with a lower drive hubby here. A very discouraging post, since I really have tried all these things. As someone else above mentioned, I have to be careful because if I try too much he just shuts down more, saying I am pressuring him. He says I shouldn't need him so much, and that sex should be the icing on the cake that we can go without. It is slowly getting better, but his indifference sure hurts.

Scout
Scout

I've heard the numbers are closer to 30% of wives who want more sex. Either way it's just as painful for us as it is for men yet hardly no one talks about it. Just like Ann said above, my husband has told me I'm getting enough sex because I'm a woman and we don't need as much as guys!

Father of 10
Father of 10

Very good article again Paul, thanks. I question your decision to include the last point(masturbation). While I agree with you that masturbation is not itself a sin, I question the wisdom of advising it. One, it gives the wife more of an excuse to refuse sex. Two, other than LONG separations or LONG term medical issues that prevent sex I think married people should avoid masturbation. Fasting from sex for short periods is good for both, and if the time frame is too long for the man than the woman could manually stimulate the man. I guess I see masturbation as almost always selfish and to be avoided in marriage. I was going to send this post to my two married daughters, but decided not to because of masturbation being recommended. Thanks for you work, you and your wife have been a blessing to my wife and I even though we have never met.

Ted
Ted

One final thought : marriage is supposed to reflect the relationship between Christ and the Church.Husbands, would Jesus treat you the way you treat your wives? Wives,would you treat Jesus the way you treat your husband?

Ted
Ted

I can verify all that Paul has said is true. Husbands don't talk to their wives about it because of shame for their weakness and in some cases simply not wanting to put pressure on their wives.I have been struggling with this problem almost my entire marriage of 36 years, I have always loved my wife and I believe she has always loved me, yet at times the resentment and hurt caused us to avoid being around each other.We have made tremendous progress recently through working at our communication and bringing to light our different resentments without condemning each other,While we have a long way to go I believe that as we build trust and acceptance of each other God will heal our relationship in this area.

Andrew Jardine
Andrew Jardine

To me the answer here for all Christians, men and women, is 1 Corinthians 7:3-5. Marriage means each of you has the responsibility to meet the sexual needs of his or her spouse. Period. Anything less than this is spouse abuse. Full stop.

Ann
Ann

I'm in the exact opposite position, but it's getting better. I am the one who usually initiates. He says he needs my help to get him going, but I really need to know that I'm wanted too, you know? I sit on the fence between "Ok, I guess I will just initiate most of the time," and wanting so desperately for him to initiate. I'm starting to try to think of this as a disability on his part, that he needs a little extra push, then things are great, but I do resent having to make it happen. If I didn't, sex would be once a month, but because I do, it is usually once a week. (and yes, I mark it down when it happens!) Early on in our marriage, after having a baby and realizing I adored sex, it was excruciating, because we had sex only about a dozen times a year! (Yes, I counted all those marks.) Now it's up to almost 50 times a year, and it's 15 years later. I just love him so much, and want to express that to him, but I know he struggles with low drive, and thinks that it must be enough for me, because I'm a woman. (?) I could stand it to be at least a couple times a week, because if it isn't, I get very irritable and start to wonder why he doesn't want me. He assures me it's not me. Aside from all that, I am interested in techniques on hand jobs. ;) Lots of lubrication, I know, but shall I just wing it from there?

Kelli
Kelli

Thanks for writing this Paul! I'm just a random wife that reads your blog and I really appreciate your style of writing in general, as well as what you have said in this article. Thank you for laying it all out clearly to give us wives a little more understanding. :-)

Auntie Em
Auntie Em

Thanks, once more, for your very insightful article! We girls need to hear this-- our husbands are hesitant to speak this openly sometimes, but they are thinking it! Melinda

Gaye
Gaye

Tough words, but true. It took me many years to really understand this.

Molong
Molong

Bravo Paul, great article. Yes, it's true. Wives needs to read it, my wife too. You speak the very words of men.

Pearl
Pearl

Thank you for this male insight. I will be linking to this soon, Paul.

TheGenerousHusband
TheGenerousHusband moderator

@soinlove Praise God for the change! May it get better and better for you, and may you inspire many others.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Nate - Normal? I'd say no, but it is far too common, and becoming more so as far as I can tell. Thing is, those who are happy sexually don't tend to talk about it, so we don't hear from all of them. I think most couples have a difference, with one wanting at least 50% more than the other. For some the lower drive rules, in some the lower drive spouse is good about meeting the drive of their spouse, and in most the actual amount of sex falls somewhere between the two.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Scout - I've heard it as high as 30%, but that seems too high. It may also be that such a number includes women in couples where both husband and wife want more sex, but their life does not allow them to do that. This is not the same as being refused. It may well be 20%, and I think it's fairly easy to support 15%, which is why I use it.

livinginblurredlines
livinginblurredlines

My blog touches on my husband's lower drive and refusal. Start at the beginning to get the whole story, though.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Father of 10 - On giving the wife more of an excuse, that is why I gave the point that follows. Masturbation as a reason to say no is like saying "you can pee your pants" is a reasonable alternative to stopping at a restroom. I think you and I pretty much agree that masturbation should be the last option, and if it comes to that too often something is wrong. That said, I know plenty of men who say masturbation while away keeps them out of trouble, and even out of most temptation. If he's doing it because his wife has suggested it, or calls and helps him, then he is not only dealing with his physical need, but also feels very blessed to have a wife who understands and cares for her husband. (And lest someone think I am covering for my own choices here, it's been a couple of years since I was away from Lori overnight, and we've never been apart for a full week.)

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

When society tells you at ever turn that men are selfish sex crazed monsters, speaking up and saying "I'd like a bit more sex" is difficult. Just wanting more makes you worry you are horrible. Many times I've had guys tell me they masturbate multiple times a week because they don't feel it's "fair to his wife to expect her to meet his needs." Most of these men have never let their wife know how much they want, and on more than one occasion Lori has heard from the wife of such a man that she wants more sex! It's always great to let that couple know they both want more, and to just do it. If guys who could have more, whose wives would like more, are afraid to share the truth of their drive, how much more is a guy who hears no often going to ask less and less?

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

I can see the value in a blog like what is being discussed, so long as it did not become unhealthy by being a gripe fest. It would be very difficult to do that while still in it - I doubt I could have done it. But some can, and done right it would be very valuable. Katd - thanks for promoting the TMB message boards, I don't do that often enough here. I've seen some amazing things happen there, both in terms of loving support and suggestions that make a difference.

Kat D.
Kat D.

I'd love to start a blog about being a high drive Christian wife with a low drive husband, but I don't have hubby's permission to do that. Anyhow, this list can seem saddening to those of us wives with disinterested husbands. It doesn't make sense and only reiterates that our men aren't like most men. My problem is that if I initiate too much or seem too enthusiastic, my hubby will shut down and refuse. But the original question still remains...what are we wives doing to keep our sex lives heated and insulated? We can really only do our parts and yes, the disinterest and refusals of our husbands HURTS, but when we work at it the way God wants us to work at it for our marriage, we can keep it from getting too cold.

The Generous Husband
The Generous Husband

Ann - I'm sorry he does not initiate, and I understand how that makes you feel. That said, good on you for doing what it take to have a good sex life. As to hand jobs, my bride says she will think about doing something on that. The easy way is to ask him to give you a few second demonstration of what he would do - start with that and then try other things. A few pointers: ► The underside of the head is the most sensitive part. ► His bits are not as delicate as yours are, and he will likely want to be handled in a way that will seem rough to you. Squeeze harder, move faster.

Jen
Jen

I would totally read a blog about the women having a higher sex drive than the hubby; I am in that boat and I find it frustrating for me while my hubby finds it funny that I want to have sex a lot.We end up talking circles around it and nothing ever changes.Anyways just wanted to say your not alone!!!

Ann
Ann

Why do you need permission to start a blog, Kat? *scratches head* Unless you mean that you would include him by name. In that case, make it anonymous, and you can be as honest as you like.

Katd
Katd

boards.themarriagebed.com has a section for spouses who are refused and a lot of support. I was there for a while and it helped me get some ideas. I chose to leave after a time because I have an addictive nature to online groups like facebook and...ahem..blogs. Anyhow, the people were supportive, but it all should be coupled with prayer and full reliance on God....kind of like people saying Pill A works great, but you'd better see your doctor before taking Pill A.

Ann
Ann

It's like a counseling session, you need to get help and support somewhere. it's not like you are badmouthing him, or talking bad about him. It's an outlet. I see your point though. :)

Katd
Katd

Because how would you like it if your husband wrote a blog about your sex life without you knowing, especially if it wasn't flattering, even if it was anonymous? It doesn't feel right to me.

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