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Do you wait until you are "in the mood" to have sex?
Are you doing a lot of waiting and very little lovemaking?
Being in the mood to have sex is not the best way to sustain intimacy in your marriage.
It's just not. It's a crappy gauge.
And if you are never or rarely in the mood, then pretending that this is "just how it is" probably isn't helping things either.
Yes, I know. There is more to marriage than sex (a friend reminded me of that recently. Not that I needed reminded. I am, after all, married, so of course I know there's a lot more going on than sex).
BUT, if a husband and wife really could be having sex on a fairly regular basis and they aren't, then how can we possibly argue that the relationship is all it could be?
God wants married couples having sex -- not because He is a tyrant who just doles out commands haphazardly. Nope.
Rather because He is a love-filled "for you!" Creator who knew that marriage is hard -- and that a husband and wife would need powerful ways to stay connected emotionally, spiritually, physically.
And because He is the designer of marriage, offering it as a covenant relationship with unique responsibilities and privileges (sex being both a responsibility and a privilege).
"But what if my marriage sucks, Julie? What if I really am never in the mood because we have bigger deeper issues?! What then? What do you say to me then?"
"Or what if I really do want to want to have sex, but I simply have no desire?"
As for the marriage struggles, I would say that I'm genuinely sorry for your pain. As someone who has suffered the pain of divorce, I know painful marital discord in the worst way. And though my current marriage is much healthier and stronger, we still experience hard stuff in our marriage.
As for low desire, I would say to first look at why you think that low desire might be there. If it is because everything else in your life is getting first dibs on you always and you are exhausted and spent, then it likely is time to re-evaluate what balance means.
If your low desire is due more to a physiological reason, talk to your health care professional. (I recently watched a webinar on low sexual desire in women and I am hopeful that the FDA is moving closer to approving more medications for treatment of low sexual desire in women).
If you are on hormonal birth control, talk to your health care provider about possible negative side effects this could be having on your sexual desire.
Regardless of the reason behind you not being in the mood, I offer this: Unless you are in a physically or emotionally abusive relationship, you need to do what you can to strengthen your marriage.
I don't know what that looks like in your unique situation.
I don't know if that means addressing difficult issues in your relationship, talking to your doctor, setting priorities better or re-evaluating wrong or vague messages you've heard about sexual intimacy in marriage.
I do know this though. If you are choosing to coast through marriage with little or no sex, you are robbing yourself and your spouse of something profound.
What could you do today to start to turn that cycle around?
Be brave. Be honest. Be real about what needs to change for the better in your marriage. And then do your part to work on that.
Just don't rely on "being in the mood."
Copyright 2014, Julie Sibert. Intimacy in Marriage Blog.