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When I was about 4, I was riding in the car with my grandmother on a nice day—nice enough to have the windows down. I had a stuffed animal with me (a stuffed monkey, my grandmother recalled when she was telling me this story).
So there we were just cruising along on a somewhat busy road, and for no reason at all, I threw my monkey out the window. My grandma wasn’t quite sure at what point. I’m guessing in typical 4-year-old fashion, I eventually announced what I had done. At any rate, my monkey was gone! I had discarded something that was important to me.
I already can hear some of you arguing, “But sex wasn’t important to me. It was easy to throw it out.” And some of you wouldn’t say it was easy to throw out, but you threw it out nonetheless.
Just to be clear, I am not talking about situations where there is huge unresolved relationship discord happening, and the depth of that discord is making sexual intimacy nearly impossible. Nope. Not talking about those scenarios.
What I am talking about are the marriage situations where there aren’t big struggles going on, yet one spouse has simply removed sex from the marriage because they didn’t feel like having it or didn’t consider it important to the marriage.
Rarely do I meet someone who goes into marriage with the notion that sex is optional. Yet I hear from plenty of people whose spouse is treating sex exactly like that—optional. It’s an option they would choose only if they felt like it, but they rarely or never feel like it. The sex-starved spouse is frustrated, hurt, confused and disappointed, but even those emotions don’t stir any change of heart in the spouse denying sex.
The good news for many couples in this scenario is that rebuilding sexual intimacy is often possible. It’s not like my stuffed monkey debacle in which getting my monkey back was not going to happen. The monkey was gone. Something important to me was gone, because on a whim I decided to throw it out.
But for couples wanting to rebuild sexual connection, things can be different. With the right attitude and intentional effort, there is hope you can rebuild. It’s not about regaining what was lost as much as it is about moving forward with humble resolve that sex does matter. Sex matters! It shouldn’t be treated like an option, but rather as a vital part of a healthy marriage.
A good place to start is with a vulnerable conversation with your spouse, acknowledging your transgression of omission. Express your regret for pushing sex to the side, ask for forgiveness and tell your spouse you want things to look better sexually in your relationship. Sure, there are no guarantees the process will go smoothly, but if you keep nurturing a sexless marriage, the outcome won’t be good either.
And I have a 5 video series available on building better sex in your marriage. Great way to invest in your marriage! You can find out all about it at this link: Better Sex in Your Christian Marriage.
Copyright 2020, Julie Sibert. Intimacy in Marriage Blog. Links may be monetized.