More Masturbation Talk. From a Couple of Wives.

If you stopped by on Monday, you discovered that my fellow blogger friend, Mrs. Hot Holy Humorous, and I are trying to get our hands around this masturbation topic.

(You gotta cut me some slack with that last sentence. I’m a writer for goodness sakes.  Clever word play is my own sad pathetic form of entertainment. I kid you not).

In all seriousness, Mrs. Hot Holy Humorous and I both believe masturbation is a valid topic to discuss with regard to how it impacts sexual intimacy in marriage.

It’s worth talking about, and maybe the way we’re shedding light will generate good dialogue with your spouse.

We tackled a few questions in part 1, and now we’ll tackle a few more.

I recommend you read the first posts, because they kind of set the foundation for what we’re doing here in part 2.

And if you want to bolt without reading any of it, I respect that.  (One of my goals this year was to work on not being offended — like when people don’t like what I write. Or when they cut me off in traffic.  Jury is still out on how well I’m doing.)

So tag along as we each provide our answers to the below questions:

What about the scripture that talks about Onan spilling his sperm? Does that verse reference masturbation?

Me: I don’t think that verse has anything to do with masturbation.

Onan withdrew his penis and ejaculated on the ground.  God’s issue with this was that Onan failed to fulfill his duty to impregnate his sister-in-law.

What’s fascinating to me about all the discussion on this scripture is that it is so often tied to the debate about masturbation.

Is it just me or could we spend a lot more energy peeling back the layers on the historical and biblical significance of a command that a man impregnate his sister-in-law – or God would kill him?  Talk about some pressure to perform sexually.

I’m just saying.

Hot, Holy, Humorous: Catholics and Protestants have approached this scripture quite differently; in fact, it is my understanding that priests have interpreted this passage to mean that a man should only ejaculate into a woman’s vagina – that no sperm should be wasted.

However, as a Protestant Christian, I agree with scholars who suggest that Onan’s sin was not fulfilling his duty to father a child with his brother’s wife and give that child a place and inheritance in the family.

Onan still made love to his former sister-in-law – getting all the goodies part of the deal – but refused to make good on his obligation and to treat her with respect. (It’s fascinating how the free milk and cow story plays out over and over and how this mirrors today’s problems with absent daddies and baby mamas. I digress.)

I don’t think this scripture specifically references masturbation, but it does address the importance of respect and relationship in godly sexuality.

What about the scripture that refers to people becoming lovers of themselves? Does that verse reference masturbation?

Me: Some people interpret 2 Timothy 3:1-3 in such a way that they believe it can be applied to masturbation, no matter the circumstances.

When I read those verses, though, I don’t think God is making a blanket statement about masturbation. I think God is referring to a selfishness and self-centeredness that results in devastation far beyond the selfish person.

As I’ve already said, when a couple incorporates masturbation into their sexual intimacy as an act of love and strengthened oneness, it hardly resonates with a motive of selfishness.

All that being said, if a married person is masturbating and it is destroying oneness with their spouse, well obviously this is being fueled by a selfishness that is indeed devastating.

Hot, Holy, Humorous: 2 Timothy 3 warns of perilous times in which people will become lovers of themselves.

I’m not a Greek scholar or pastor, but I know a little about the Greek word for love. Actually, there are four Greek words for love: philia, agape, eros, and storge. Of course, it’s all Greek to me (thank Shakespeare for that phrase), but for our purposes, recognize that philia = friend love, while eros = sexual love. The word translated as “lover of self” is philautoi – a derivative of friendly not sexual love.

My conclusion? That scripture is not about loving oneself sexually, or masturbation; it’s about a problem we all struggle with – thinking too much of ourselves period. Then again, if you think too much of yourself, you’re more likely to selfishly pursue your own sexual pleasure regardless of any negative impact to your spouse.

Often the best verses about how we should behave sexually with our spouse are those that deal with how we should behave in any situation – considering others ahead of ourselves.

Want to see what other questions we answered?  Head on over to Mrs. Hot Holy Humorous’ blog, where we both answer:

Is there such a thing as “too much” masturbation?

What if my spouse wants to masturbate but I find this disturbing or wrong?

And by all means, don’t stay quiet if you have a comment you’re dying to post.  She and I both moderate our comments, but we hit the publish button on nearly all of them.

Now does anyone want to give us a hand for being brave in talking so openly about masturbation?

(Yes. I know. More word play. All for my personal entertainment.)

Copyright 2011, Julie Sibert, Intimacy in Marriage Blog.

12 thoughts on “More Masturbation Talk. From a Couple of Wives.

  1. Sheila Wray Gregoire says:

    I’m with you on this one, ladies! Thanks for writing these posts. If I can be even more frank, I think masturbating can be actually quite a positive thing in a marriage IF you’re able to do it in front of your husband. Not all the time–but to show him what you like. And many women have never really done this, or don’t actually know how they like to be touched (and their husbands don’t know, either). So if you can get over the embarrassment, it can be quite an intimate (and enlightening) experience.

    To me, the ACT of masturbation is not the problem. The SECRECY is the problem. And, of course, some women would prefer their husbands take care of it themselves so they don’t have to, and that’s totally wrong. The reason God made our sex lives different is so that we would have to think about meeting each other’s needs before we got our primary needs met. If we short circuit that through masturbation, then we’re getting rid of an element of marriage that can draw us together. And that’s dangerous!

    Thanks for these posts. I hope they help! My own post on masturbation is here.

  2. JulieSibert says:

    Thanks Sheila! Always a delight to connect with you!

    And I really appreciate your post on masturbation (I included it in the first post Mrs. Hot Holy Humorous and I did —

    I just think we have to begin shedding more light on these matters that impact sexual intimacy in marriage. So great to be dialoguing about all this. I pray it begins conversations between husbands and wives!

    Thanks again Sheila!

  3. J (Hot, Holy & Humorous) says:

    Thank you, Sheila. I could not agree with this sentence more: “The reason God made our sex lives different is so that we would have to think about meeting each other’s needs before we got our primary needs met.” I guess the standard for masturbation being beneficial or destructive is whether you are merely meeting selfish needs or fostering the relationship.

    I really appreciate you adding your take on this touchy topic. (Okay, after Julie’s wordplays, I had to say that!)

  4. Valerie says:

    Thanks for your article. 🙂 I’ve struggled with this some and have rec’d correction from God when doing it as a replacement for my dh. Then, I thought it was fine as long as he wasn’t around and I was in the mood. But even though it felt good, it lacked that “one-ness” feeling. 🙂 I missed my hubby.

    Recently I was reading my Bible and ran across this: 1 Corinthians 7:3-5 (not a command but advise) ” A husband should satisfy his wife’s sexual needs. And a wife should satisfy her husband’s sexual needs. 4 The wife’s body does not belong only to her. It also belongs to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong only to him. It also belongs to his wife. 5 You shouldn’t stop giving yourselves to each other except when you both agree to do so. And that should be only to give yourselves time to pray for a while. Then you should come together again. In that way, Satan will not tempt you when you can’t control yourselves.”

    I am not saying it is wrong for others, but this is where I feel God is leading me. I still do it for my husband b/c he enjoys watching, but I don’t do it for Me simply b/c I see my hubby every day and should be able to attack him at some point and time when the kids aren’t around. 😉

  5. ThePureBed says:

    This is a great and greatly needed conversation in the Christian community and we applaud you for the manner in which you’ve undertaken it.

    At The Pure Bed, we believe masturbation can offer as much as it can take away. The question for any believer is really two fold: 1.In principle (scripture, conscience, faith, conviction), is it generally permissible for someone to masturbate in this situation? 2.But is it the best choice for me?

    If question 1 gets a yes, question 2 must also get a yes before we proceed. These choices are consequential and must be made in ways that preserve the integrity of our Christian witness.

    Awesome posts on masturbation…

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  7. Gina Parris says:

    You gals did a priceless job on this subject, including the input from Sheila. Apparently I am the only “love expert” here who can’t even come close to bringing myself pleasure like my husband does. In total opposite approach to what Sheila says, I’d probably ask my husband, “Hey can you show me exactly how you turn me on like that so I can do it by my self when you’re not around?!” hahaa I guess I’m pitiful, but grateful. Good job, my friends.

  8. Dwight Hasbrouck says:

    My 2 cents as a Christ centered man on this strange realm topic.
    I am a long time sex addict that has been healed and restored to purity by the grace,mercy & love of God and by the awesome encouragement from some men who are true blessings from God!
    For men it’s the issue of lust. Porn was my poison and after being exposed to it at age 6 I went down an ugly and crooked path for a very large percent of my life before and after meeting Jesus. Mr. or Mrs. “M” is a strange and mysterious practice. I discovered it at age 8 and participated in it at a level that was beyond extreme.
    I prefer all sexual pleasure to be enjoyed only with my wife.
    She does not and never has self pleasured herself. Not for her she has stated with firm conviction.
    All of the women that I was involved with in my lost and immoral years did engage. They claimed that it was helpful when a man was not around!? Some still did even when there was. Some years before God blessed me with my present wife I was engaged to a wonderful Christ centered woman. She revealed to me at a point in time in our courting that her older sister taught her how to M. She stated that she got hooked on it and continued doing it even after she came to know Jesus. It is one very addictive activity if left to our flesh nature’s desire.
    I do believe that it does have a positive use but only for specific purpose. It should never be in first place over couple relations and for both men & women to be used only in extreme circumstances in which normal sexual relations can not take place. Health issues being the main challenge. It’s really a personal choice when we come down to it. For me I am more sexually charged at 53 then when I was a lost 16yr old. My wife loves our sexual encounters but still has a long way to grow as to becoming an equal partner. I am a 50-50 kind of guy. Equal interest,initiation and a true desire to meet my needs in the same way that I meet my wife’s needs. Christ centered men should desire our wives to crave us the same way that we crave them.God created sex and His desire is that His true kids who are married are having the best sex in the universe!!!!!! Bar none.
    The big M issue is and always will be one mysterious monkey.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    Soon after my husband and I got married I woke up to him masturbating. I felt hurt and frustrated that he left me out of an opportunity for intimacy and pleasure with him. I voiced that to him and let him know I was totally up for anytime he woke up and had that desire I wanted to be a part of it. He had thought it was inconsiderate to wake me up, I told him I did not mind at all. 12 years later it is still my favorite way to get woken up with his touch of desire for me.

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