Find Your Secret Romance

secret romanceThat’s what the email subject line said.

Find Your Secret Romance.

Let’s just say I get a wee bit of spam because I blog about sex. And by “wee bit” I mean ridiculously copious amounts.

I don’t need any penis enhancement pills.  And I’m really not in the market for cheap fake Viagra.  And last time I checked, I’m all the wife that my Beloved can handle, so there’s no room in our house for a mail order Russian bride.

Delete. Delete. Delete.

Yeah, I see all that and more.

But “Find Your Secret Romance” unnerves me a bit. It is one of the many marketing tactics of Ashley Madison.

Never heard of her?

Well, for starters you should know she’s not a her, but rather is a website. No need to go check out the website yourself.  I’ll give you the low down of the depravity that abounds there.

Founded by Noel Biderman in 2001, AshleyMadison.com exists for the sole purpose of facilitating affairs for married people.

Yes, it’s online dating for those hankering for some infidelity. Paid online adulterous dating. (You didn’t actually think Noel was doing it out of the kindness of his heart, did you?  No, the man is raking in the cash from people compromising their marriage covenant through his site. He is a multimillionaire many times over).

The site tag line is “Life is Short. Have an Affair.”  I kid you not.  They even offer an “Affair Guarantee” package.

Crazy, right?

It would be all so… well…so comical.  If it weren’t so true. Which makes it so heartbreakingly sad.

Find Your Secret Romance?

Sex is full of ironies, and AshleyMadison.com just casts further light on how deep those ironies run.

For example, some wives (and a few husbands) try to argue to me that “sex does not matter” in marriage, all in an effort to justify their own avoidance of sex in their marriage.  Their rant about “marriage being more than sex” really translates for them into “marriage is not sex at all.”

They want so badly to convince me.

I mean really bad.

As if convincing me will soften the blow to their precarious argument when they actually open up their Bible and see what God says about sex in marriage.

So the irony is that try as some people may to say sex doesn’t matter in a marriage — that it is a negotiable, an extra, a “maybe when I get around to it” sort of thing — the cries from the other side of the argument shout otherwise.

As well as the cha-ching from the virtual cash register.

If sex is no big deal to a marriage, then why are many married folk willing to pay for it elsewhere?

Think about that for a moment.

AshleyMadison.com’s niche audience are married people. Who want to have sex. With people who are not their spouse. This is how AshelyMadison.com makes their money.

Basic principles of supply and demand tell us that if there is not a demand, then there is absolutely no financial incentive to provide a supply.  AshleyMadison.com started in 2001, has millions upon millions of members and can be found in numerous countries.

And discreteness is their powerful hook.

Which brings me back to another irony.

If sex in marriage is really “no big deal,” then why would the refusing spouse even care if the rejected spouse goes looking (and paying) elsewhere?  Why would discretion even be necessary?

We should stop in our tracks when we see how incongruent it is for a spouse to say in one breath “sex is no big deal…certainly not worth my heart and effort” … and then in the next breath dig in their heels and say how angry and hurt they would be if their spouse goes looking for sex elsewhere.

There is a lot of irony brewing there, leading us right back to the truth:  That sex does matter in marriage.  It matters a lot.  And adultery is indeed painful and devastating and wrong.

Before you think I’m being too black and white here, I do know that adulterous waters are much muddier.  I know that some people have affairs even when they do have a great spouse and great sexual intimacy at home.  I know.

But certainly we cannot ignore the number of people who would not sinfully choose to succumb to adulterous temptation if there was authentic and frequent intimacy on the home front.

Ponder with me for a moment what would happen if all married couples enjoyed, pursued, protected, treasured and held in high regard their sexual intimacy.

I am optimistically confident that nearly all of the cash flowing to AshleyMadison.com would grind to a halt.

For that matter, I think the porn industry would take quite a hit as well.

Not to mention the adult entertainment nightclubs.

I’m trying to further shed light on this painfully weak proclaim that sex does not matter in marriage.

All the evidence leans to the contrary, begging us to take to heart how much it really does matter to the strength and wellbeing of a marriage.

Want even more irony?  (I mean, we are on a roll, we might as well continue).  Noel Biderman, the man who started AshleyMadison.com, has said he would be devastated if he found out his wife used the site to have an affair.

Devastated.

Devastated to think about another man’s hands on his wife (yet more than happy to help that same man put his hands on someone else’s wife).  I wonder what would happen if Noel tuned his conscience and heart more to what his possible devastation is telling him than to what his bank account is telling him.

Finding your secret romance should be all about looking into the eyes of your spouse and peering into the comfort of your marriage bed.  It shouldn’t be about chasing it down (and even paying for it) elsewhere.

How about you?  What will it take for you to create a secret romance… with your spouse?

Copyright 2013, Julie Sibert. Intimacy in Marriage Blog.

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12 thoughts on “Find Your Secret Romance

  1. Topper says:

    Excellent post, Julie. I didn’t even know there was such a disgusting site, but I guess I am not surprised that there is.
    I will give you another very recent anecdotal irony of my own.
    My wife took the children and moved out. I get to see my children a couple nites a week now, whenever my wife and boss deigns to grant me access. (All of you castrated “divorce is never an option” American evangelical 21st century metro-men insert your foolish anti-wisdom here.) She left against my will, of course, but then, I am only the biological father and husband, and this society being what it is, I know where and how I legally stand and what I will have to passively settle for. Anyway, I thought you people would appreciate what formed the last straw for my wife. It was this: I asked her if it would be okay with her if I slept with someone else. I didn’t tell her there was nobody else, not for a couple days did I finally tell her. I let her stew in it. Next thing I know, she has found another place. She had talked about doing that before, but this is what set her off to finally take action on it. After she blew a lot of money we didn’t have in order to procure this place (which is, naturally, in a location inconvenient for me to see the children regularly), and after she started loading up boxes, I broke the news to her that there never was anybody else, that I just wanted to see if she was a hypocrite in addition to being a sexless, covenant-breaking wife. Which of course she proved herself to be.
    Gee, Honey, for 13 years you showed me in your actions that you didn’t think sex was very important in a marriage. So now, why is it such a big deal if I take my sex-starved manhood and go seek remedy for it elsewhere?
    I know why, I think.
    But I no longer care what she thinks or doesn’t think.

  2. Topper says:

    Oh, but rest assured, she went to “church” today, though.
    To listen to the same pulpit-parrot hireling shepherd who didn’t have the guts to back me up when my wife was refusing sex nearly all of the time, and refusing physical and verbal intimacy ALL of the time.
    Great. Those two deserve each other, along with all the other pew sitters in that 501c3 corporation. Count me out.

  3. Topper says:

    I would like to add one more thing, if I could. I don’t want to flog a dead horse, but I feel it is worth noting. It is this:
    I am a very quiet man, whereas my wife is bubbly extroverted, and effusive. And if you asked any of our mutual, evangelical friends, they would have nothing but wonderful things to say about my wife, whereas when it comes to me, they would probably shrug their shoulders and say something about how they didn’t really know me. So if push came to shove they would tend to side with her and think that I am the jerk here.
    (Don’t get me wrong, I have a very few exclusive fellow nerd friends of my own, but when it comes to mutual Christian friends of ours, my wife who is an extrovert can definitely win people over!)
    So here you have another disadvantage that probably a majority of men must contend with: Your communicative social skills are probably not as well developed as your wife’s, do even if you are the lesser jerk in the equation, most people are automatically going to assume that you are the bigger jerk, and that your wife is the lesser.

  4. WH says:

    @Topper: I absolutely support your feelings about the state of sex priority in marriage from the modern church. I’ve long since criticized organized Christianity about unloading both barrels on a male reading a Playboy, and looking the other way about sexual neglect by wives. You are absolutely correct in the role your minister appears to be taking in the church – he’s paid to talk on Sundays and NOT call the wives to task on anything. I’m deeply sorry that this is both your experience and the likely experience of other husbands in your church. It is this double-standard on sex that destroys Christian marriages, IMHO.

  5. Paul H. Byerly says:

    @Topper There are plenty of folks out there who are all about the importance of sex in marriage actually including having sex in marriage. It is not always a popular message in churches, but more and more are speaking it.
    I am sorry for your situation, and even more so for your children.
    @WH It goes way beyond “reading a Playboy”. My most recent poll found that for men under For men under 35 years of age 77% had masturbated to porn more than 100 times prior to marriage, 49% more than 500 times and 32% more than 1000 time. Other surveys tell us that half the men in any church congregation choose to look at Internet porn in the last month.
    Porn is not a minor issue, and it is not all the fault of wives who say no. Porn is a big part of the problem. Not the whole problem, but a part that needs to be dealt with along with the refusal part.

  6. WH says:

    @Paul – you are attacking the popular subject (men or porn), not the subject that 90% of Christian men say is the #1 issue in their marriage…denial of sex by the wife. Let’s spend a couple of years addressing 90% of the marital issue from the pulpit, shall we? I personally have NEVER heard ANY direct admonition to the wife on denial of sex from the pulpit. No sir, not a bit but it’s open season on the husband for even THINKING about a pretty girl. Please refute my claim: porn would cease to be on the radar IF wives would do what this website says they should do…HAVE SEX WITH THEIR HUSBANDS. And I don’t mean when the wife is good and ready, I mean when the husband needs it. If the husband KNEW his secular satisfaction was important to his wife, how many affairs would there be? How much porn use? Stop preaching against the symptom (porn) and preach against the cause (forced celibacy in marriage).

  7. Paul H. Byerly says:

    @WH I refuted your claim already when I discussed how many men masturbated to porn hundreds or THOUSANDS of times BEFORE marriage.

    Yes, men say it is the main problem. Some of those same men have been using porn non-stop since long before they got married.

    I’ve said a great deal about sexual refusal, and have been doing so on-line since 1997. I’ve said far more about sexual refusal than I have about porn – but that does not mean porn is a non-issue.

    While I doubt you will admit it, porn is PART of the reason that SOME wives don’t want to have sex. It is not the only reason, and for some it is not a reason, but it is part of the problem.

    So how about we deal with all the parts of the problem instead of trying to attack one gender while letting the other ignore their sin?

  8. WH says:

    @Paul: you didn’t refute my claim, you just took another shot at men and did not link sexual refusal to porn use. I argue that from the pulpit and from most Christians, sexual refusal is NEVER discussed. I’ve never heard one word on the subject from a minister, only that men are going to Hell for whistling at a pretty girl…the wife is given a free pass.

    I wager this: if every Christian wife made the following commitment to their husbands, porn use and affairs would drop to unnoticeable levels: “Husband, ANYTIME you have a sexual urge or want to use porn, you come to ME, your wife, and if it is in any way practical, I will make sure you have a sexual event…and an orgasm.” Let’s hear THAT challenge and then see if I’m right, shall we? Until Christians hold sexual refusal AT LEAST as sinful as they hold porn use, we get nowhere.

    Porn is an easy target, as are men (usually the high sex drive person). Want to get rid of porn? Give men the God approved sexual release they need: a cooperative wife! Hold her as accountable for sexual refusal as much you hold men for using porn. It is not a one-sided issue. Please take my challenge and never mention porn use without mentioning spousal refusal in the same breath. Work the cause, not the symptom.

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