Stressed out and confused about sex with wife

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by JustADude, Feb 10, 2020.

  1. Faceplanter

    Faceplanter Fapstronaut

    I'm coming to this thread late, and still reading as well, but this seems to be a good place to jump in and comment.

    If you both have a Catholic background, and it's not clear if this is still a large part of your lives, then I would suggest finding a faith-based marriage weekend retreat (or longer) that will have a larger than normal emphasis on sex. I went with my wife to one held in Oregon that would meet this description. Naturally, a marriage weekend will cover more than just sex, but some will have sex as a major component and not shy away from discussion and others will downplay its importance. Not sure if there would be a Catholic specific version around, but there might be.

    Such a weekend may give her an outsider's perspective on why sex is important to you, and if nothing else should give you space and direction to discuss these issues.

    I cannot say that such weekends have worked miracles in my marriage, which has less sex than yours but more open conversation, but I do see them as helpful.

    It would be particularly helpful if part of her reluctance to talk about sex comes from any past teaching from the church, because the teachers at at the marriage retreat might be able to ”reprogram" her thoughts in a way that she won't accept from you.
    JustADude likes this.
  2. Faceplanter

    Faceplanter Fapstronaut

    My response to a situation like this would simply be to say that I was horny and to acknowledge that she is probably not in the mood and that there is no pressure but that you had been thinking about her all day. She can take that information and respond however she wants to. That might mean to offer you sex, that might mean to offer to be close to you in bed without sex, it might just have her repeating that she is tired and not interested. But bottling it up is not the way to go.
    JustADude likes this.
  3. Faceplanter

    Faceplanter Fapstronaut

    Oh, and another comment, you really should sit down with your wife to do the five love languages quiz

    It is a very useful tool to help understand how you might view affection in very different ways. It also comes up as a common reference in things like the marriage weekends I mentioned earlier.
    JustADude likes this.
  4. Real Roboin

    Real Roboin Fapstronaut

    Does your wife dread being touched because of it always being a wanting of sex. I use to withhold any affection because it was never feeling pure, I felt like I was groped and only touched when he was wanting sex. Do you cuddle with her with no intentions of it leading to sex?
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  5. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    I have my marching orders for now... going to churn through the books I bought and use them as conversation starters with my wife. I am not sure where that will lead, but I'll leave all options open.

    I agree. I think a lot of my bottling up of things is subconscious and the hardest part is realizing I am bottling the feelings up.

    Thanks for writing that. Yes, I do believe she feels that way, she has almost used the exact same words as you to describe that feeling. I don't understand it though... So, if I want to have sex, it means I don't want my wife? What do you mean by 'never feeling pure'?

    As for groping... I am a lot better about that, I am much less grabby and forceful than I used to be.

    As for always wanting to have sex, that is something I really struggle with. As soon as I am physically close to my wife, my arousal shoots through the roof. I don't need to orgasm, I just feel a strong urge to have sex, to sexually bond. For example, 2 days ago, we made love for a while, she had an orgasm, I did not, I was fine with that. Afterwards I felt very satisfied that I got to be deeply intimate with my wife and that she was able to enjoy herself.

    Your comments relate to something I was going post about today. We had sex 2 days in a row this week, which is NOT normal for us. I absolutely enjoyed all of it. The day afterwards, I was alone with my wife in the Kitchen and I said this:
    Me: "I want you to know that I really enjoyed our last two evenings together"
    Her: "(Sarcastically) Thanks. I was hoping you would have enjoyed our quality time together, not just the sex."

    Now, I am sure she enjoyed the sex both times. And, I never said I didn't enjoy the time we spent together outside of sex... I did enjoy the time we spent together. I don't really understand what part of my comment rubbed her the wrong way. Can someone please help me understand better?

    Is my wife convinced that intimate sex is possible with anyone in the world? That me having sex with her is NOT a sign of how much I adore her and want to be with her? That she is NOT special, because I could have sex with anyone? I'd really like to talk to my wife about this and try to understand better. If what I am getting at is the case... then sure, she is right, I could have married someone else, I could have had a family with someone else, I could have decided to weather the storm with someone else. I could have fun with friends, I could do lots of things. But the important fact is, that I chose to spend my life with her, day in and day out, I chose to build a life and a family with her, not someone else. She is the only one I have ever had intimate sex with, she is the only person I have ever shared the intimate part of my soul with. Before I met her, I had sex with 3 other women, and that sex was never intimate, I never had a bond with those people. I never had a bond with porn either.

    Why is intimate sex, and me wanting always have it, such a bad thing? Obviously there is something bad about it, because my wife is put off by me wanting intimate sex whenever I am near her. The thing is though... I don't think she is put off because she is not in the mood, I think she is put off because she thinks I only want her for sex, which is a fallacy, and she is denying herself sexual pleasure because she believes in a fallacy. Women are strange beasts. Please help me make sense of these things.
  6. AfricanSunset

    AfricanSunset Fapstronaut

    Sho this is tough though. As a female that have been pressured into sex I can emphatise with her that she would want to avoid that at any cost.

    For us women, if we feel presured into sex or any type of sexual touch with a male, it feels that we are breaking a part of ourselfes.

    For most of us sex is an extention of
    1. The security( on all levels) we feel with a man.
    2. Emorional intimacy
    4. Companionship.

    Love realy.

    It is not a seperate thing that is happening to us, or that we are doing to someone else.

    Without these things sex in marraige can become a big emotional crisis for us. No fun

    You sound very frustrated though.
    And She sounds like she has not been sosialized to talk about sex, or express her needs. Which is not helping

    But you can only work on yourself here and hope she comes around.

    I think one of the biggest mistakes guys can make is to think that their spouse wil want to have more sex if they can just find out what technique they need to use or what they need to chainge in bed. Or basically just ask or pressure them for more sex.

    Want to know a big secret?
    Sex is not comming from her as so much as it is comming from you... WHAT?

    Let me explain. The sex towards you is the result of the lovebanks that you are filling inside of her.

    The more love for her, the more sex for bouth of you.
    Not the more sex the more sex

    Dont focus on sex. Remember sex is the desert after the meal. Focus on the meal... the sex will come.

    Focus on her love banks. Serving her heart. Make sure you understand her love languages and start acting appropriately.
    Make sure you are having at least 15 hours of intimate conversation a week( about two hours a day).

    Fall in love with her again.

    Update your mindmap of her.(what is her values, experiances and priorities)

    Make sure that your tone towards her is uplifting and supporting and that she is emotionally safe with you.

    Work on your own personal grouth.

    Have/start something that you can do together as a couple.

    Touch her in affectionate non sexual ways that you would a child or a pet.
    (men forget or just dont know that women unlike men are not just 'ready' for sex or sexual touch. We experiance readyness through above enviroments. If you extend sexual touch to us before we are ready we feel our boundaries have been crossed. We can feel angry at you and that we need to protect ourselved from you.. Not sexy)

    All of the above... No strings attached.

    Phew... Being a husband is tough, but rewarding . Hopefully

    All the best.
    And well done for removing PMO from your marraige
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  7. AfricanSunset

    AfricanSunset Fapstronaut

    If you where ever graby and forsful your spouse is going to take a long time to heal from that. She is in need to relax in your love for her. No strings attached.
  8. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

    Why don’t you take sex off the table and do a 90 day hard mode reboot? I think I understand your wife just a little better now. She feels like you use her for sex. She wants to feel loved for herself. Focus on getting into recovery and also on repairing your relationship without sex to blur the lines. If you are loving your wife, serving your wife, and showing her she matters with absolutely no expectations of sex, you may just see a huge change in her. You’re not clean from porn, you’re not in recovery yet, so the waters of your relationship with your wife are still muddy. My husband is over one year no porn no masturbation and we still struggle with “ what’s the damage from his addiction and porn use or what’s just typical communication or marital problems.”
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  9. Nicko Stretch

    Nicko Stretch Fapstronaut

    Maybe she saw your compliment as a clumsy way of trying to condition her into having more sex?

    I have been where you are, believing that I am the normal one and that I need to have sex, spending hours and hours thinking about it, trying to figure out how I can possibly get my wife to have more sex with me. I too was totally obsessed thinking sex was the answer to a perfectly functioning relationship.
    I couldn't understand why my wife didn't want unlimited sexual attention which was what I was offering. Why would she deny herself such sexual pleasure? If I was her then I would be jumping at the chance. And that was the point,I am not her. I did not want to get to know her and understand her, I just wanted to change her to meet my needs, which I can see now was totally disrespectful and not the behaviour of an equal loving partner.
    By taking sex out of the equation I can now focus on getting to know my wife. Right from the start of this latest streak we have still been intimate. We hug and kiss and touch each other. I get massively aroused as you say you do and have learned to enjoy the feeling rather than just seeing it as a sign I need to have sex.
    It has taken a while for my wife to start trusting me again.
  10. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    Lots of statements I want to reply too. But first, I have been venting on this thread more than I have been talking about the good that has been happening. The past week with my wife was excellent. We worked together well all week, I spent more time with her than I usually do, we worked on preparing the family meals together, we went on a mini vacation with the family. Vacations have usually been a sore spot for us (lots of fighting), but this one went really well. It has really been an excellent week.

    I am not in a constant state of stress or chaos and have not been for a couple weeks. My last post was a first draft brain dump in which I really went inside my head to use many words to express one thing. 'I wish I understood the inner workings of my wife's mind better'. My wife and I have talked about intimacy 4 times over the past 9 days. During the talks we didn't fight or get defensive. It hasn't been all perfect, I did have a mini anxiety attack one evening after having a strong feeling of 'unlovedness'.

    I know that my correct course of action is to take one thing at a time and not try to do too many things and change too many things at a time.

    I am very ignorant about a few things and I need to spend some time learning, before I put too much effort into actions. I am going to read the 5 books I bought and continue to ride this wave of good vibes with my wife in the meantime. I've already read 1 of the books, I'm 60% through the second book. Let's see what I learn and how that shapes my opinion on how to move forward from here.

    Yes. I do believe this is part of the problem. For a large portion of our 15 years of marriage, I pressured her for sex. I think that did a lot of damage. There has been a lot of healing going on in our marriage over the past 5 years. Don't confuse my word grabby with anything even close to forceful, by grabby I meant more of an immature and ignorant dude trying anything he could to please his wife and sometimes I was just too rough, or proceeded to penetration too fast, or was not careful enough, not realizing at the time how women work. Which by the way, the book 'Women's Anatomy of Arousal' has blown me away by explaining how novice of a lover I have been. I mean... wow, it was like I was trying to put together an IKEA coffee table using a second hand manual for a Walmart desk. Which resulted in me penetrating too soon, sometimes way too soon, or using my rough hands on very sensitive tissue, etc..

    As obvious as it may seem, I am now realizing how my marriage has a lot of room for improvement and the marriage's flaws are not just one thing and each problem has its own solution. Some of the problems I see now are:
    1. Poor role models and a negative sex western society left both of us ignorant about how to be intimate outside of sex and kept us from talking about intimacy in any deep fashion for the first 15 years of our marriage.
    2. Even though I thought I knew enough from sex education classes and porn, I really had a very incomplete and slightly backwards understanding of my wife's anatomy, her sexuality, how her body works, and her menstrual cycle. This has caused a lot of minor, but very frustrating situations for both of us.
    3. Porn was eating up my time and leaving a heavy fog over our relationship. Creating all sorts of confusion, blocking my ability to have truly truthful conversations with my wife.

    I am sure there are more issues, but all of these issues seem very fixable, we just need time, patience, effort, and communication.

    Yes, neither of us have. It is pretty cool that over the past 9 days, we have talked about sex and intimacy much more easily than ever before in our marriage.

    I am glad you wrote that. 5 years ago, I started falling in love with my wife all over again and her with me. And actually, that is why I brought up the problems with our intimacy with her 2 weeks ago. I felt like it was time we pulled the monster out of the closet and started to address our issues related to intimacy. The first 5 years of our marriage were painful. The second 5 years I learned to cope with the marital pain better, but we were not happy. These last 5 years have been a time of healing and growth for both of us. These days, I cherish my wife and really enjoy our marriage.

    I believe you hit the nail on the head with 'She feels like you use her for sex.' I think that is exactly the issue. The porn and my previous behavior in bed (getting mad when she won't have sex with me, trying to guilt her into sex, etc.) has done some difficult to heal damage in this arena. The healing has already begun though, most of my bad bed manners stopped years ago, and now that I have kicked porn to the curb, that has lifted a weight off of the relationship.

    Taking sex off the table is not going to happen right now. I don't want to. My wife does not want to. And the science and professional advice regarding the topic that I have read make a decent case that abstaining from sex with my wife is not the right course of action. Like I wrote above though, I will try to keep an open mind and I will keep learning. I am very much looking forward to reading Cupid's Poisoned Arrow.

    I am in recovery though. I guess we are playing semantics. I finally went into recovery 5 years ago when I figured out how to overcome my problems with anxiety. Quitting porn 40 days ago was part of my recovery. Yes, I will forever have issues from 20 years of watching porn that I never expect to fully recover from, but I am and I have been in recovery for a while. There is not this magical day where things will just click and be fixed. I guess I don't understand your statement.

    Good point. I'll have to ask her next time we have a moment to talk. I think understanding her feelings on the subject will help shed some light on the situation and I can use the better understanding along with what I learn from the books to help accelerate our healing and growth.

    I do not believe I am normal. I also do not believe my wife is normal. I think I have made that statement many times in this thread. I also do not believe I NEED to have sex. I definitely FEEL like I need sex, but I am not convinced that is what I really NEED. 2 nights ago is an example, we had sex but I did not orgasm, and I came away from that evening feeling very satisfied. To me, I interpreted that to mean, I don't really know what I need, all I know is that there are times when I don't feel close to my wife and sex has helped in the past, what I don't know is what other ways I can feel intimate (closeness) with my wife that don't involve sex. I am truly hoping to find other ways to keep a strong intimate bond with my wife that don't involve sex, hopefully some of the books I am reading will provide some answers.

    @Nicko Stretch, you seem to have found Kareeza as a way to do that. I am hoping you are right and I am hoping that there are other ways... maybe as my recovery from porn progresses things will solve themselves, who knows, I'll keep an open mind. Also, I am not focusing on more sex as the solution, it may seem that way, but I promise I am not. More sex would probably help, but I am definitely behind the times when it comes to non-sex intimacy and I have a lot to learn. I am super stoked my wife is now talking to me about all of this.

    I look forward to the day when my wife is ok with the idea of Kareeza. I think that would be amazballs. In the past I have suggested similar things... but something about Kareeza bothers her. I will bring it up with her soon though and see what she has to say.

    THIS. I think this is the hardest part for me. Patience and time. Even though I have made positive changes and continue to make positive changes, in the end, it will take time to heal, to build trust, and to forget old wounds.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
  11. Brokenwife

    Brokenwife Fapstronaut

    I haven’t yet read all the posts on this thread so apologise if this has been said already.
    Swap 2 and 3 around. Look after your wife’s needs to the point she will feel so appreciated and loved that she will respond accordingly and 2. will happen.

    The love language quiz is a very useful tool. My husband has always applied what makes him happy to how he treats me despite me telling him I need other things. It made me feel that what I wanted wasn’t important or dismissed. So then in turn, I wasn’t willing to do the things he needed me to do. It is essential to be honest answering the questions - don’t answer as to what you think you should feel but how you actually feel.

    I am married 24 years, my husband has had a masturbation and porn addiction for most of that time although I’ve only come to realise and understand this in the last couple of months.

    A couple of books which have been helpful to us in the past and to which we have turned again are Love Busters by Willard F Harley, Jr and His Needs Her Needs also by the same guy.

    These books focus on the whole relationship, not just the sexual side. We have uncovered some disturbing truths in our relationship lately and if we’d be honest and open with each other, we could have addressed our marriage issues at least ten years ago, maybe more.
    Bradford0418 likes this.
  12. Nicko Stretch

    Nicko Stretch Fapstronaut

    Hey Dude, It sounds like you are making real progress. I thought I would outline where my wife and I are in terms of intimacy to give you some ideas of how you can be intimate which are not having sex. Firstly about karezza.
    The karezza book has been helpful to understand how our minds and bodies work, but we do not follow some kind of Karezza blue print for intimacy. We are on a journey which, at the moment, does not involve habitual penetrative sex. Penetration is not against the rules and it happens very occasionally. Personally I am acutely aware of how ejaculation changes my mood and thinking towards my wife, so I have decided to take that out of the equation until further notice - I don't know how long.
    So how are we intimate? Through lots of eye contact,smiles, compliments, physical contact,hugs, long kisses,public displays of affection, discussions about our most difficult thoughts and feelings, by asking each other for advice and help, respecting each others opinions, talking about our weaknesses- basically by being massively supportive and taking the time to get to know more about each other.The more I know about my wife, the closer I feel. Closeness equals intimacy.
    In terms of sexual pleasure, by removing PMO and my obsessively thinking about sex, I have become so much more sensitive to the physical contact we have. The long kisses and hugs can bring waves of sexual pleasure through my body. These can be brought back just by thinking about them sometimes. While in bed we make a point of embracing and kissing every night and in the morning. If we have more time we will enjoy touching each others bodies, exploring where is sensitive and gives pleasure. For me this is often my genitals and my wife really enjoys being able to touch them without feeling it has to lead to ejaculation or penetration. This took her a while to trust and took me a while to relax into - not being precious about whether an erection was coming or going. For my wife her arms, head and breasts are areas that give her great pleasure when being touched in a conscious and loving way. The hardest part for me during this sexual intimacy is to stay present in the moment and not to let my mind spin off into the future. This is where mindfulness practice is very helpful.
    There are times, however, when I don't feel anything from physical contact, in fact I can find kisses and hugs agitate me. When i feel like this the thought of orgasmic sex is massively appealing. Over the last 6 months we have realise this disconnect happens because of stress and anxiety. My defenses are up so I cannot feel the closeness I usually feel from the kissing and hugging. I want orgasm to self sooth the pain and discomfort I am feeling from the stress and anxiety. In these situations talking is our intimacy. Opening up about the pain I am experiencing and being supported through it by my wife builds great closeness.
    I have just read this post to my wife and her comments were:
    "It's not easy" and " you have to do it together".
    We are definitely only at the start of our journey but are pretty sure we are on the right path. .
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  13. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    @Nicko Stretch
    Thanks for sharing the details of your interactions with your wife. That really helps me understand your perspective and gives me something to think about over the next few weeks.
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
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  14. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    Thanks for the insights and the book recommendations. I will check them out.
  15. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    I am 15% of the way into 'Cupid's Poisoned Arrow'. At first I was *very* skeptical of the book, especially after the first chapter. I am still *skeptical*, but I have lowered my critical guard a little bit.

    One thing @Nicko Stretch and @Psalm27:1my light forgot to mention that the book enlightened me about. I don't know why this never occurred to me before; I can quit orgasming from within my marriage while still having sex with my wife. She doesn't have to know anything about Kareeza and I don't think she even needs to agree with my cessation of orgasming? Does she?

    A few years ago, I toyed with the idea of abstaining from orgasming as a sort of science experiment, but when I mentioned it to my wife, we both were under the impression that would mean we would no longer have intercourse. She really really didn't like that. I think at the time I suggested that we could just cuddle or I could just bring her to orgasm. But, I don't think it occurred to either of us, that I could just do the same things we normally do, but instead of going all the way to orgasm, I could hold back. That could be difficult, but not impossible, and it could be fun to experiment with.

    There have been a lot of unconvincing logical conclusions by the author of 'Cupid's Poisoned Arrow', that aren't helping quash my skepticism; but her writing style is sort of a journal brain dump and thus I think it is ok for her to make some weak assertions, as long she still makes some really solid arguments for her hypothesis. And, I am only 15% of the way through, she mentioned that 3 or 4 of the chapters contain the scientific evidence to back up her claims, and I haven't read any of those yet.

    One area where 'Cupid's Poisoned Arrow' has shined for me, is that she makes a very compelling case for why I should abstain from orgasming for the rest of my life. Not only does she point out reasons why orgasming causes problems, she goes further and gives a compelling argument for why arousal without orgasm transcends intimacy satisfaction levels acquired by frequent sex. This is new to me, because I have only ever heard (maybe others have said it but I wasn't listening) the reasons to quit orgasming was to 'reset' my brain so that I could return to orgasms in the future after I had reset. 'Cupid's Poison Arrow' puts permanent abstinence from orgasm in a positive light, while most of nofap treats abstinence from orgasm as a temporary painful hurdle to get over.

    Previously I had journaled stating that I quit porn because I was able to make a very solid case in my mind for why it was terrible for me. But, that I can't find the willpower to quit masturbating, because I couldn't think of good enough reasons to do so. Well... I think that 'Cupid's Poisoned Arrow' might have accomplished that feat, I think the book has given me enough reason quit masturbating to orgasm, at least as an experiment.

    I'll keep dwelling on the idea of quitting O and M. But, no rush, might as well finish the whole book first. Still though, question to you all, especially the spouses. Is it a good idea for me to simply quit orgasming with my wife without telling her why? Like, we could have sex until she either orgasms or she is ready to stop? Or, do you think that she is going be thinking about why I stopped wanting to orgasm?

    I know what you all are thinking... JUST TELL HER YOU IDIOT. Well... yeah... there in lies the problem. She won't understand. I just know she won't, at least not yet. I can't even bring up the idea of us following a books advice on how to more intimate (i.e. intimacy exercises in books) without her face contorting into a look of disapproval. How could she be ok with me telling her I want to have sex with her, but that I might have to take a second to cool down every once in a while so that I don't orgasm? Right?

    Also, got into a tiff with the wife yesterday. The frustrations between us bled into today and lasted all day. We are going to bed for the second night in a row in a state of angst with each other. What happened? I tried to talk to her about the books I have been reading... I guess it wasn't a good time to talk (she was tired from working long hours) and she was very much disinterested and basically told me she wasn't interested and that I was being "too analytical" and "thinking too much". What she said is partially true, that is who I am, but I got offended because my whole effort was rejected, which is a trigger for me, because once again, I am the initiator and she is the denier. I went up for the 3 pointer to win the game for our marriage and she swatted the ball away.

    Sorry for the brain dump. This would make a better journal entry. Thanks for reading if you made it this far, it makes things easier knowing I have people on nofap to provide support.
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
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  16. mondhamray

    mondhamray Fapstronaut

    Why couldn’t you? Lots of men take a second to cool down so that they don’t orgasm even if they don’t have the goal of not orgasming at all. They just want to last longer.
  17. Nicko Stretch

    Nicko Stretch Fapstronaut

    I am glad you are getting something from CPA. Yes, I have intercourse with my wife but without orgasm, infact without the majority of the friction involved in conventional sex. One thing that definitely didn't help our sexual relationship was me masterbating even when that was not to orgasm. We now reserve all sexual thinking and contact to when we are together. This one change has made a massive difference. Sex has become so much less important to me. Its almost like the more I did it the more I wanted it.
    In terms of non sexual issues, you may benefit, if you haven't already looked at it, from reading some of John Gottman's research. See the Gottman Institute website for resources.
    Bradford0418 likes this.
  18. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    Yes, I can. I already do this while having sex. And sometimes I cool off during intercourse and end up never orgasming for one reason or another (my wife orgasms before me and she wants to stop, or something happens during sex to prematurely end the tryst like I accidentally slam her cervix or overstimulate her clitoris, or whatever).

    But, there is a difference between 'sometimes unintentionally having sex without orgasms' and 'purposefully always abstaining from orgasm during sex'. My worry is that if I don't talk to my wife about it, she will somehow get offended that we have had sex 10 times and I never went all the way to orgasm. Or, maybe she will be blissfully unaware? Maybe she would think I have delayed ejaculation problems? Maybe she would become self conscious (might think I am trying to punish her or something)? I don't really know.

    But, at this point, it seems too early in my newly initiated quest to open up intimate communication in my marriage, for her to be able to comprehend what the hell I am talking about. My guess is that if I brought it up the conversation would go like this:
    Me: I want to stop orgasming.
    Her: Umm.... Okkkaaayyyyyy. Don't I get to have a say in this?
    Me: Well... sort of, but, we can still have sex like normal, I will just not orgasm.
    Her: Why would I want to do that? What is wrong with you?
    Me: You would want to do that because you and I can still feel intimately close and still have fun.
    Her: Why go through all of that trouble if we aren't going to orgasm.
    Me: Because I think orgasming is causing my mood swings. After orgasming, I tend to feel irritable, and soon after that I really want to have sex again and I get bummed when it doesn't happen.
    Her: How do you know that?
    Me: I don't know anything for sure, I just want to try it out, one of the books I am reading suggested it and I want to try it out.
    Her: You are really over thinking these things and it is not fair that you are taking these ideas and making me live with the consequences.
    <cold shoulder and angst for 1 to 2 days>

    Yeah, something like that. And, to be honest, in the heat of the moment, I won't always choose the right words and say something that triggers her, or maybe one of us isn't in the best mood and we somehow sabotage the conversation. Or, one of our kids starts screaming, and we don't even get to finish having the conversation. Or... a meteor hits the house, but no one dies, but the kitchen still catches on fire, and I gotta deal with that. Or, it was all a dream, I wake up and realize I never really had the conversation and I have to have it all over again.

    What is better, tell her and risk creating a lot of angst, or just stop having the big O during sex and wait until she brings it up?
  19. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    Yesterday, during one of our angst filled conversations I asked:
    me: "On a scale from 0 to 10, where would you rate our intimacy? 0 being your best friend or sibling and 10 being the most intimate marriage ever"
    her: "Our definitions of intimacy are different, how can I answer that?"
    me: "Using whatever definition you want"
    her: "I would give us a 6."
    me: "See! that is what I am talking about, you don't get it, we have a problem and you think everything isn't so bad. How can we address a problem if we are on such different pages"
    her: "I need to go check on the chicken in the oven"
    <I guess the chicken was fine because dinner tasted good, but she never came back to finish talking>

    I see this problem in our marriage that we should work on so that we both find 10x more satisfaction in our marriage. To me, we have some deep seated issues to work on. For her, she is OK enough with the status quo, that she is willing to just let things get better slowly on their own without any special intervention like books or intimacy exercises or purposeful talking.

    Yesterday I finished reading the Christian based book 'The Art of the Intimate Marriage'. In a section describing the types of things husbands should do for their wives and wives should do for their husbands to 'romance' them, the author writes this:

    "Wives: What Your Husband Needs
    Well, OK. We’ll add a few more things. The reality is that for many men, they desire all the things below almost more than they desire intercourse and orgasm.

    Admire him. Your encouraging words hold so much power. Put them in cards, texts, and phone calls. Put notes in his lunch. Compliment him in front of others. Look at Proverbs 31:23. “Her husband is respected at the city gate.” Why would this passage be included in a chapter on the wife of noble character? The respect this husband experienced among the elders of his land was connected to his wife in some way. Our guess is that her respect for him, her open admiration of him in front of others, was a part of the view that others had of him, the respect they held for him. Let him hear your respect for him, your admiration for him, from the city gates, when you sit in your home, as you walk along the street, as you spend time with friends. Admire him sexually as well. Tell him how he is a good lover. Send him a text and tell him, whisper it to him in the middle of a gathering, or tell him over coffee. What are the things he does with his hands, fingers, tongue, and lips that bring you pleasure? Tell him specifically.

    Watch him. When your husband walks around naked, when he is getting dressed, when he puts on an outfit you like, when he wears something that looks good on him, watch him. Tell him. Admire his body and put Song of Songs into practice.

    Touch him. Many men hear their wives say, “He only touches me when he wants sex,” or “He’s not very affectionate.” The reality is that many men long for more touch from their wives as well. There is a whole chapter dedicated to affectionate touch in this book. This is just an important reminder that men often love being touched all over, all the time. If that is your husband, appreciate your man’s body—and not only when you’re in bed. Give him random kisses. Touch his back and butt as you walk by. Reach over and touch his arm, his thigh, his chest.

    Prioritize him above all others. “Place me like a seal over your heart” (Song of Songs 8:6). The Hebrew word here for seal, chotham, means the seal made from a signet ring that a king would use to make a royal decree or send a royal missive. The Beloved here is letting him know the level of importance she wanted their relationship to have in their lives. Make your spouse your most important relationship: above your kids, your job, your parents and siblings, the other Christians in your life. Prioritize your sexual time together. Don’t allow all of your energy to go to everyone and everything else, leaving him only the dregs. Prioritize your dates with him, sex with him, going to bed with him, talking with him.

    Indulge your own sensuality. Don’t wear underwear and go about your evening, noticing what it feels like. Tell him you have nothing on underneath what you are wearing. Take bubble baths or put scented oil into your bath. Use bath gels and scented lotions that make you feel good. Wear clothing and materials that are sensual on your skin: lace, satin, or silk. Why is this in a section about what to do for him? Because for most women, when they purposefully and intentionally indulge their own God-given sensuality, become more sensually and sexually attentive to their husbands.

    Tell him what you need. When it comes to sex, he needs to know what you would like. Tell him what kind of touch you like and what is arousing to you. Use the exercises on sexual communication in earlier chapters to learn how to talk while you are having sex and how to talk after and before sex, so that he knows what you like and what you prefer. Your husband needs direct requests and assertive communication about your needs.

    Spend some money. Spend money on lingerie and on making your bedroom look good. Rejuvenating your sex life may mean buying new sheets and a new comforter. Make your room the most important room in your house and show this by spending a little money to make it look that way. For sexual fun, if you both like the idea, buy some sexual toys and some sexual dice or board games.

    Romance him. Who said the only one who likes romance is the wife? Though most men would not be caught dead saying the words, “I wish she were more romantic,” many men express that they wish their wife longed for them, wanted them, and thought of them. When he’s working at the computer or reading something, kiss his neck and tell him what you love about him. Put notes in his briefcase, his tool belt, his lunch. Text him. Buy his favorite candy bar out of the blue and throw it in his lap. Plan a date somewhere unique and beautiful. Surprise him with an expected fun time or night away.

    Understand. Be understanding rather than derogatory about the fact that—for your husband, as for many men—sex may be a major way in which he feels connected to you and experiences comfort (Genesis 24:67). He may want to have sex with you when he gets a raise or loses his job; when he is frustrated or when he is excited; when he is sad or when he is happy; when his team loses or when his team wins. This doesn’t mean that it is OK for a husband to demand sex or to become angry if he wants to have sex and it doesn’t happen. However, it is easy for women, and the world, to mock men for their desire for sexual frequency. You may need to have an honest and thorough conversation on your differing preferences for how often you have sex, but if he has a greater drive than you, making sarcastic comments can be harmful to your relationship. If, on the other hand, you have the greater sexual drive, read the chapter on desire and arousal and make sure that you come to understand that his lower desire may have nothing to do with his level of attraction to you.

    Indulge his senses. He may like your excited sounds as you enjoy his touch and your orgasm. He needs the sight of your naked body. He probably likes to feel you touch his body and the feel of your hands on his testicles and penis. He may be a man who likes the smell of certain perfumes or bath gels on your skin. And remember, Satan has inundated the world with sexual pictures. You can find creative ways to indulge his visual need for pictures of you sexually. One way both of you can get those pictures is by keeping your eyes open while you are having sex together and coming to orgasm. Replaying those images can be very arousing for both of you.

    Blow his mind. Share your sexual fantasies with your husband. Purposefully think about sex more and tell him what you thought about. Blindside him with a sexual surprise (a sexual dance, serving dinner naked, putting a pair of crotchless panties in his lunch bag, playing strip poker). Be fully engaged in your sexual time together: be there, talk, tell him what you want, and ask him what he wants. After you’ve shared what kinds of things you both feel good about in your sexual repertoire, be the one to initiate making things happen. Buy some toys or fun products and use them.

    Be creative. See the suggestions above for the husband for games and fun. Initiate this kind of play and put your twist on it. Show your husband you thought of him by setting the whole thing up. When he gets home or is done with work, have a trail of rose petals laid out that lead him up to the bedroom. Let him know you’ve got some sex planned by hanging a piece of lingerie where he can find it on the bathroom mirror or the door handle as he walks into the house.

    Initiate. Many husbands feel loved and wanted when their wife is the one to initiate sex. Be the one to reach over. Be the one to set the atmosphere. Reach for his genitals first. Grope him in the car and in the kitchen. Tantalize him by how you sit (especially if you’ve told him or shown him ahead of time that you are wearing no underwear or crotchless underwear), give him hidden touches, and whisper to him about what you’re going to do to him later."
    -Konzen, Dr. Jennifer . The Art of Intimate Marriage (pp. 276-280). Elm Hill. Kindle Edition.

    My wife has never done 95% of these things. The 5% she has done are very rare. I read this section and thought... is my marriage really that bad when it comes to sexual intimacy? In that same chapter is a completely different list of things husbands can do for wives. I do most of those things on a regular basis. Is the intimacy part of my marriage that lopsided? I am thinking about emailing my wife the quoted section above, I probably will do that this morning, I do have a fear of turning this book reading thing into a weapon against her, by using parts of books to make her feel bad, but I also don't want to be walking on egg shells about how I feel, I want to be raw about my feeling. I am not sure how to balance being raw about my feelings and risking shutting the conversation completely down. I guess I hope that I could share this with her and she will then think... "Maybe he is right, maybe I am ignorant about the lack of intimacy in our marriage, maybe I should be more receptive of his efforts, maybe we should tackle these problems as a couple, maybe I shouldn't be a spectator on the sidelines only jumping into the game when I feel comfortable"

    Last edited: Feb 25, 2020
    mondhamray and AfricanSunset like this.
  20. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

    The only thing you can change in your marriage is you.27 years ago, I could’ve written what you just wrote. I bought books, did everything they said. Counseling helped me see that I can only change me. Until he wanted to change or saw a problem there wasn’t a lot I could do. My husband thought we had a great marriage. He, like your wife, did not see a problem. In many ways we do have a great marriage. However, the intimacy and connection was not there for me. It took 27 years for him to wake up and see there was a problem.

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