Why You’re Not Getting Spaghetti
This post has some history behind it. It started with my XY Code post entitled Understandable, But A Bad Idea in which I told women it was a bad plan to refuse some sex act just because their husband enjoyed it with a former girlfriend. Then my wife wrote Make Spaghetti for Your Husband which expanded on the idea, She suggested that if a man loves spaghetti and his mother made fantastic spaghetti refusing to make spaghetti for him was putting her self-doubt ahead of loving her husband.
The comments on my XY code post, and comments on the same issue on other blogs, tells me this is a major issue for some women, especially in the bedroom. As best as I can tell it’s not just the fact he engaged in the sex act with some other woman. The issue seems to be that he really enjoyed it, which suggests the other woman did it particularly well. This creates the fear of not living up to the high bar the man must have for the sex act.
As Lori and I discussed this (you wouldn’t believe some of the things we say over dinner!) I realised there was a male/female difference at work here. If a sports team has no chance of winning a game, but shows up and plays their best, we all respect them. If they just don’t show up we don’t respect them. The truth is most of us would respect our wife doing a “poor” job at some sex act if she was really trying. However, when she refuses to even try we don’t respect her. Perhaps in her mind, if she can’t win, she shouldn’t compete. She thinks forfeiting a game you can’t win is better than showing up and losing.
So the reason you’re not getting oral sex, or her on top, or sex in the shower, may well be that you’ve told her how much you enjoyed doing that with Betty-Sue all those years ago. Your wife fears she can’t do half as well as Betty-Sue, and she thinks not trying is her best option.
If you’ve mentioned some sex act you did with another woman several thousand times, there probably isn’t much you can do to fix that at this point. Your wife is wounded and afraid, and anything you say about it now will just make her feel worse. If you’ve not made a big deal about it over and over there is some hope.
The bottom line is she needs to feel you want to have sex with her and would like to try whatever. Unfortunately, what we often communicate, even though it’s not what we feel, is that we want to do whatever sex act and she’s the only choice we have for doing it. That may be far more about her wounding than you, but if you understand it you can speak more carefully.