Sex and control
Sex is a huge control issue in many marriages – both controlling sex and using sex to gain control of other areas (aka manipulating).
First to the wives reading along – using sex to get control of other things, and exerting control to limit sex, are both exceptionally bad ideas. Neither is in any way loving or godly, and both will hurt your marriage relationship. If you want your husband to stop caring, if you want him to just go through the motions of marriage while slowly slipping away, doing these things is one of your best bets. However, if you want a healthy marriage, if you want your relationship to grow, then you need to avoid these things. If you have been doing either of these things, and destroying your marriage is not your goal, I suggest you change immediately.
Now that I have told the ladies what most husbands want them to hear, it’s time to deal with the guys.
First, what I said above to the women is true for men as well. My best educated guess is 20% of wives are frustrated by a lack of sex, and I would bet most of those women have been on the receiving end of sexual control games. If you want her to leave, or just to leave you alone, carry on; if you want your marriage to continue, or get better, then knock it off.
The other sexual control issue is trying to get sex by various forms of manipulation. Once you start getting sex by use of shame, guilt, or threat (like “I might lose control and doing something stupid”), you will find it increasingly difficult to get sex without these things. Likewise, if you start getting her to say yes to sex by offering her something special, some favour, some treat; this is essentially prostitution, and once it becomes a business transaction why would she want to give it away? Getting sex by any form of control means sex is no longer an act of love, which is a very bad thing for your wife, for you, and for your marriage.
The reality is it is better not to have sex than to have sex because of manipulation or other forms of control. I know, you think, “easy for you to say”. Actually, it is not. I have been there, and I remember how much it hurts, how much it drives you crazy, how you want it to just stop. I fully understand reaching a point of frustration and desperation where it seems like a good idea to do whatever it takes to get sex; I gave in to more times than I want to admit. Because I gave in, because I have obtained sex by manipulation, I know how it turns out. I know the sex is fine physically, but empty in every other way. I know it solves the physical problem, but erodes the relationship. I also know it hurts your sex life as a whole, making future sex a bit less frequent, and not as good for either of you. This road leads to a wife who hates sex, and a man who eventually feels like a jerk. Try to understand what I am saying here is true, and remember it the next time you start to do something to get sex you know is not kind and loving. Aside from being the right things to do, if you look at the long-term picture it is the only wise choice.