3 Things Higher-Drive Spouses Long For

You might think the three things higher-drive spouses long for are sex, sex, and sex. But while I’m certain higher-drive husbands and wives would like greater frequency of sexual intimacy in marriage, I truly believe they want more. So here are three other, very important things higher-drive spouses long for.

couple sitting on bed, facing away from each other + blog post title

1. Recognition that their sex drive isn’t bad. When you want physical intimacy a lot, and your spouse doesn’t, you can get the feeling your sex drive is a bad thing. Sometimes, it’s just a feeling you have that you want sex more than you want to want it. And other times, it’s expressed by your mate with statements like, “Stop being so selfish,” or questions like, “Why do you want sex all the time?” — usually accompanied by a haughty tone and a sneer.

Rather than embracing your libido, you start to feel less-than, in your eyes and/or your spouse’s. And that’s a horrible thing to feel about something that should be considered a gift from God.

What does the higher-drive spouse want? Recognition from their spouse that this sex drive isn’t bad. It’s not inherently selfish or evil or disgusting. A strong desire to make love with your covenant mate is a beautiful thing.

2. Understanding that sex isn’t just about sex. Sure, I know some people who are completely into the physical side of sex and don’t understand the deeper implications. But I hear from many, many more higher-drive spouses who want sex not simply for physical satisfaction, but because it makes them feel connected, loved, and intimate with their spouse. If it was only about physical release — being candid here — the higher-drive spouse could take care of things on their own.

Instead, that husband or wife seeking more sex doesn’t see their mate as a mere tool for achieving a goal. No way! For them, it isn’t just about sex — it’s about so much more. Even if words fail them and they seem to default to talking about the sex itself, if you could dig deep and tease out what’s really happening, sex is powerfully meaningful.

They want the physical pleasure, but they want the whole package — physical, recreational, emotional, spiritual. And more than anything, the higher drive spouse wants to feel the love of their mate.

3. Commitment to try. The mismatch in drives can be frustrating, but what really hurts is a mate unwilling to even try. It pains the heart of someone longing to show love in the bedroom to be rebuffed and refused constantly, with no hope in sight of anything ever changing. What would help a lot is a simple commitment to try — try to talk about it, try to see another point of view, try to get in the mood, try to change things up a little now and then, try enjoying yourself in bed.

Most higher-drive spouses don’t expect an immediate turnaround in their less-willing mate. While it would be great to come home one day and find their lover with bedroom eyes, little on their body, and rip-raring to go, that’s not their expectation or intent. Rather, they long for the lower-drive spouse to love them enough to try to understand and meet their needs — just as you should each be doing in other areas of marriage. The higher-drive spouse isn’t looking for a quick change, but rather a long-term commitment to invest in sexual intimacy.

If you’re the higher-drive spouse, do you long for these things? And what else? If you’re the lower-drive spouse, in what way do you struggle with the desires or expectations of your higher-drive mate?

If At First You Don’t Succeed… Ask for Sex Again

Physical intimacy hasn’t been happening in my marriage as often as we’d like. It’s been harder to connect lately, with my husband and me each having full work schedules (which don’t coincide), certain family obligations, and recent ailments and sleep disturbances. I’d love to say that we’re always rocking the marriage bed over here in my house, but in recent weeks there’s been more lulling than rocking happening under our sheets.

So when yet another attempt failed last week, I was really discouraged. It wasn’t anyone’s fault. We’d planned to make love. But life happened, and it didn’t. Still, I was left missing that intimacy with my husband and feeling like our days were stacked against us.

Honestly, I complained to a friend. Not complaining about my husband, of course, but simply sharing my frustration with our lack of sexual intimacy. As a wonderful support to my marriage, she had an encouraging word for me. Once again, I remembered that, as much as we place a priority on sex in our marriage, it’s just more difficult to make happen with great frequency in some seasons.

But if at first you don’t succeed . . . Yep, try, try again!

Couple in bed with blog post title

That’s such a simple phrase that gets batted around all the time (at least in my culture). But there is great truth to it. The Bible says it this way: “[Love] always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres” (1 Corinthians 13:7).

And I believe this is one of the main reasons why I can confidently state that my marriage has good, healthy, satisfying, godly sexual intimacy. Not because we’re always “gettin’ it done” in the bedroom, but because we understand the importance of sex in our marriage and we don’t give up on each other or ourselves.

So the next night, we tried again. I think it took three tries to be able to clear the calendars, the room, the minds, and the Sandman to make some sweet love!

Which is somewhat annoying, but in our bone-dry years, we likely would have given up. And this is what I see in many marriages that are either struggling or simply not experiencing quality sexual intimacy. We get frustrated because things aren’t happening like they should, for whatever reason, and we give up. It’s just too hard, or you’re too exhausted, or you’re too busy, or you’re too likely you’ll be rejected yet again.

Look, I don’t know what will happen if you try, try again. It may not turn out. But I guarantee what will happen if you don’t try: No sex.

So today I’m suggesting that you make sexual intimacy a priority, that you persevere in pursuing the best for your marriage bed, that you take the setbacks in stride but keep moving in the right direction. We’re not sprinting in our marriages. This is a marathon! As much as that analogy pains those of us who can’t stand to run, it’s true.

If you don’t make love tonight, the world will not end. But if you don’t make love tonight and the next night and the next and the next and on and on and on, what will happen to your marriage? To your intimacy? To your heart?

So if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Dust off the disappointing moment and, when opportunity presents itself, ask for sex again. Or as 1 Corinthians 13 better says:

Love perseveres on decorative background

Why I Cringe at Comparing Sexual Intimacy to Gardening

Here we are in the season of Spring, and my landscaping bed looks like this:

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Don’t judge.

Oh, who am I kidding? Go ahead and judge. That’s terrible, pitiful, inexcusable. You should all send my neighbors sympathy cards for having to share the street with this flower-bed slacker.

Interestingly enough, marriage and sexual intimacy are often compared to sowing seeds, reaping harvests, tending gardens, blossoms and blooms. These are great analogies, and part of me delights in such scriptures as:

“Let my beloved come into his garden and taste its choice fruits” (Song of Songs 4:16).

“I have come into my garden, my sister, my bride; I have gathered my myrrh with my spice. I have eaten my honeycomb and my honey; I have drunk my wine and my milk. Eat, friends, and drink; drink your fill of love” (Song of Songs 5:1).

“My beloved has gone down to his garden, to the beds of spices, to browse in the gardens and to gather lilies” (Song of Songs 6:2).

“They sowed fields and planted vineyards that yielded a fruitful harvest” (Psalm 107:37).

“Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously” (2 Corinthians 9:6).

But another part of me cringes at these plant seeds/sow stuff metaphors. I can’t relate. I finally gave up last year and just let the weeds grow. You see, I’m a horrible gardener and have managed to kill everything from spring flowers to a cactus. If I sow a seed and tend the plant, its chances are not good.

Still, I’m planning to plant this spring, to tear out the weeds I’ve allowed to spread too fast and too far, and to encourage my garden to thrive. How can I make that happen? What will be different this time? Well, let’s analogize some more with gardening metaphors and sexual intimacy in marriage.

Being realistic about where I am and what I can do. I’d love to suddenly have a lush garden so beautiful it could land on the cover of Southern Living magazine. But right now, I have flower beds full of weeds and a browner-than-brown thumb. Instead of getting upset that I can’t garden like an Home & Garden Network show host, I need to pull out my weeds, prepare the soil, and plant something simple — something I can actually do. I need to pick plants that are easier to grow and see small successes. When I’ve mastered that, I can move on to bigger and better things.

Likewise, some of you look at your sexual intimacy and think you’re so far from where you want to be, what’s the point? You feel like simply letting the weeds take over. But you don’t have to give up. You merely have to be realistic about where you are and figure out something simple you can do to improve your marriage. Are you having sex once a month, and you want it four times a week? Add another time or two a month, for now. Do you wish your spouse was far more adventurous? Suggest something slightly outside the comfort zone, rather than demanding something you know won’t happen. Have you felt a lack of emotional depth in your sexual intimacy? Go for something simple like making a point to look each other in the eyes as you make love. Start small, and begin to sow seeds down the path you want to travel.

Consulting others who’ve had success. We have a neighbor who puts us to shame. You all have that person, right? (Maybe you are that person.) My neighbor is often out in her front yard digging in dirt, watering roots, pruning plants, and making her landscaping look gorgeous. Which, of course, makes my pitiful weed-infested yard that much more embarrassing. However, I realized something recently: Why was I jealous of her garden-tending abilities? Why didn’t I just see her as an amazing resource? Yes, this woman clearly knows what she’s doing, when I don’t have a clue. So I’m seeking out her advice, and she’s sweetly offered to help. I’m also consulting a couple of other garden-savvy individuals and nursery employees. Why not talk to people who have the wisdom I need?

When your marriage is struggling, and your sexual intimacy is flailing, where can you turn for help? You should, of course, begin with God’s Word. Our Lord has revealed Himself and His design for marriage within its pages. But He can also work through others who can advise you with the wisdom they received. Find mentors and resources that can help you work through your difficulties. I’m honored that you are here, visiting my blog, for tips on how to improve your marital intimacy. And yes, I can’t garden worth a flip, but I have learned a thing or two about sex that I’m more than willing to share. There are other resources as well, and some of you need to seek help from a pastor or counselor. Just don’t expect to go it alone, and be willing to ask for help if you need it.

Letting the Creator take over as much as possible. I have two things in my yard that grow beautifully no matter what I do — a bird of paradise plant and a loquat tree. I attribute their success to two things: pruning and God. All we do with each of these is cut down the bird of paradise now and then and collect the ripe fruit off the loquat tree. The rest is sun and rain God brings to the area where I live and where these plants can thrive. Thus, when I look for new things to plant, I’ll be looking at what else works well where we live — which plants can bloom in the soil we have, with the rain we get, in the sun and shade available. I’ll sow and reap, but God will bring the harvest.

Let God into your marriage and into your bedroom. Let His sun shine, His rain fall, His harvest come. When we ignore His provision in creating sexual intimacy for marriage, when we lock Him out of the bedroom, we keep ourselves from enjoying the harvest He can bring to our marriage bed. Pray about the sex in your marriage. Study what His Word says about it. Thank Him for the marital intimacy you enjoy. Let the Creator take over as much as possible, offering even your sexual intimacy for His glory.

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener” (John 15:1).

Help for Low Libido Wives!

I know a lot of writers.

It’s just where I am at this point, writing fiction and about Christian intimacy. Usually, I get to know someone personally before I ever open up a book they’ve written. Frankly, it’s so hard when you like someone a lot, but you don’t like their book. I mean, what do you say?!

So when Bonny Logsdon Burns of Bonny’s Oyster Bed wrote a resource specifically for low libido wives, I was a little nervous. I really like Bonny! I thought please, let me like her book!

I shouldn’t have worried in the least. Bonny did a bang-up job with Unlock Your Libido: 52-Week Sex Drive Transformation. It’s easy-breezy to recommend this fabulous resource to my readers!

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In case you’re wondering why:

1. Saturated in Scripture. Bring on the biblical foundation! It’s all here. Bonny reaches deep into the Word of God as her compass in enlightening readers about sexuality in marriage. Some verses are specific to marriage and intimacy, while plenty of others are about Christian principles that carry over into how we view the Creator of sex, ourselves, and our marriages. I adore this important focus in Unlock Your Libido.

2. Wisdom from Someone Who Knows. Bonny’s been there, done that, so to speak. She understands what it’s like to be a wife with a lower sex drive, but she also has a testimony of awakening her libido. Since she’s been in those trenches, she has practical, field-tested advice for wives who don’t desire sex much. There’s no standing-on-a-soapbox, but rather a heart and a hand to help you on your journey to becoming a more sex-positive wife.

3. Positive Self-Talk. Want to know something with a really good track record of effecting positive change in your life? Changing your self-talk. Research and testimonies are clear on this one. But sometimes we read a book, agree with it, but don’t take any actions for those truths to soak in. In Unlock Your Libido, Bonny gives a positive affirmation for each week you can practice and use to combat the enemy’s lies and replace them with godly truth. Working on that little action won’t take long each day, but over time it can make a big difference.

Bonny understands that the goal for a low-drive wife shouldn’t be getting her to “fulfill her duty” and surrender herself to her husband. That’s not what God had in mind when He designed sex for marriage! Rather, the hope is to awaken, or unlock, your libido — learn how sex can be good for you, increase intimacy in your marriage, and become something you look forward to and enjoy. Sex is also for you.

I’d love to give away a copy of this important resource to every low-libido wife, but of course that’s impractical (not to mention I’d get into huge trouble with the hubby for that unexpected expense!). So I’m going to encourage you to grab your copy now! But I’ll go ahead and give away one copy to a commenter below.

Bonny Lodgson BurnsBonny Logsdon Burns writes to encourage the low libido wife at www.OysterBed7.com. She is passionate about empowering and equipping hurting women through God’s Word and practical tools. She and her husband, David, are candid about their struggles and victories. They have three sons, like to try new foods, and dance to their own music. (You can also find her on Twitter and Facebook.)

 

Comment below for a chance to win Unlock Your Libido, and go check out the resource for yourself! (Be sure to include your email address, but you can choose whatever name or nickname you wish to show up on the site.)

20 Date Nights You Can Do at Home

I remember the days when hubby and I couldn’t leave the house — at least not without a lot of planning, a babysitter and a backup, and a chunk of money it was hard to spend on a simple date. After all, we had a diaper bill to pay!

These days, hubby and I have more freedom, with teenagers who don’t need a babysitter (we think), but we still often enjoy having date night at home. There’s something cozy about hanging out and getting romantic in your own familiar space.

Which is why I was excited to read Creating True Agape: 20 At Home Dates. Written by author and blogger, Cassie Celestain, this book walks couples through 20 do-it-yourself ideas for dates you can plan and execute at home.

Creating True Agape book cover

Each chapter has a focus topic, materials, instructions, discussion, and goals. Cassie is wonderfully detailed, making sure you have everything you need to follow through with the date night idea. All of the dates are designed to get you closer, interacting, and deepening the marital relationship.

From considering your goals to cooking together to an intimacy challenge (yay! right in the Hot, Holy & Humorous wheelhouse), there are sure to be experiences you’ve never done with your spouse that you’d enjoy. Although you might be surprised that my own favorites were probably the spa day and service project ideas.

These Creating True Agape ideas are also the very definition of “cheap date.” The materials needed are things you’ll likely have around your house, like writing utensils, scissors, a bowl, etc. But just because you aren’t laying out a bunch of money doesn’t mean it’s not meaningful. Instead, it will take a bit of effort and planning to make the date happen. But no more planning than getting a babysitter for the little ones or counting your pennies for the week to pay for an outside-the-home date.

I liked how these dates also demonstrate that with some effort and creativity, you can do a lot in your own home to open up communication, deepen your connection, show physical affection, and strengthen your marriage. It simply requires commitment and intentionality. You can start with a resource like Creating True Agape. And working through these ideas might inspire you to come up with a few of your own!

Click right over and purchase this resource! Also, leave a comment below, and I’ll pick two lucky winners on Friday to receive a copy of Creating True Agape: 20 At Home Dates.

Creating True Agape book coverCreating True Agape includes 20 easy and fun at home dates for you and your spouse to enjoy. With these activities, you will get to spend quality time together and share laughter while facilitating discussions about real life scenarios. These at home dates do more than just give you something to do. They are designed to cultivate communication, intimacy and growth! The dates also were created to include all Love Languages to ensure both people are feeling loved.

 

Cassie CelestainCassie Celestain is a wife, mom, runner and a marriage and family blogger at TrueAgape. She believes respect, trust, understanding and willingness creates happy marriages and families. She strives to keep those things the main focus in her daily life and wants to challenge others to do the same. You can get her free 6-page guide “The Secret to Making your Husband Feel Loved” now.