Monthly Archives: March 2018

5 Ways to Initiate Sex with Your Spouse

It’s Saturday, which is the day I give y’all a high-five — that is, a high-five list of practical tips or resources to nurture your marriage bed. And today, I want you to get lucky.

So let’s talk about five ways to initiate sex.

Blog post title + illustration of man and woman kissing and hearts above them

1. Plan a special date.

I don’t know what “special” means to your spouse, but you do (or should). If what turns your honey on is romance, line up the babysitter, plan a romantic dinner out, and return home to a bedroom you’ve set up with candles, rose petals, music, and anything else needed for a night of lovemaking.

If you want to go bigger, book a hotel room. If you have kids, also take care of who’ll be watching the children overnight, so your spouse can relax and know that’s handled. Ask your honey to “dress up” (again, whatever that means to you), and take them out for an evening of dinner, dancing, or a scenic walk. Order room service if you want, and spend the night enjoying one another.

And If you’re on the cheap, make a wonderful meal at home, put on something sexy or lay out something sexy for your spouse to wear, and then snuggle up together for a movie and make-out session. See where it leads.

Just be the one to set things up and show that you long to spend time, in and out of the bedroom, with your spouse.

2. Build anticipation with flirtation.

Send a sexy text telling your beloved what you’re looking forward to. Or share a photo of what you plan to wear that evening (like a string of pearls and a pair of lace undies). Leave a note in your sweetheart’s car or work bag telling them what you want to do later. Whisper in their ear what you’ve got on your mind.

Tease by running your finger along your spouse’s skin at the edge of the fabric they’re wearing or using feather-light touches over the fabric at their erogenous zones. Wives, wear a skirt, nix the underwear, and then tell him you’re going commando. 

Just flirt with your spouse in romantic, affectionate, and sexy ways. Express your longing not only to have sex but to give them sexual pleasure to their heart’s delight.

Whatever sexy flirtation you can come up could help you both anticipate lovemaking.

3. Get an inspiring resource.

Buy something for your marriage bed and then tell your spouse you want to try it out. That can anything from a flavored lube, to a bedroom game, to the Ultimate Intimacy app — which has both conversations and games to play. It can involve getting new lingerie to show off and take off.

Hot, Holy, and Humorous 3D CoverOr hey, I hear there’s this fabulous book with all kinds of ideas you can try: Hot, Holy, and Humorous: Sex in Marriage by God’s Design. Bookmark a page or chapter to read together and then experiment to your heart’s delight.

A new item for your marriage bed could be just the inspiration needed to get things revving.

4. Grab the goods.

I probably shouldn’t use the word “grab,” since I don’t want you to injure important jewels by being too rough. However, there’s really no doubting what you have in mind when you just reach over and cup his package. Likewise, some wives enjoy having sudden attention given to their erogenous zones, especially breasts.

Now this doesn’t work for all spouses, because some don’t enjoy being “grabbed” out of nowhere. This can especially be an issue for someone has experienced sexual harassment or assault or a young mom who has had kids hands on her body all day long.

But if you both enjoy it, then touching the goodies could give your spouse that clear signal — it’s go time.

5. Just ask.

This may seem like the least sexy option, but it could be the most effective. The straightforward approach might be just what you need, saying something like: “I love and desire you so much. Could we make love tonight?” It could even be as simple as a wink-wink, nudge-nudge, “Do you wanna?” And if you get turned down, ask when would be a better time and then follow through.

A tip for those with lower-drive spouses: Don’t ask, “Are you in the mood?” because the answer is probably no, even if they would enjoy a session of lovemaking. Instead, ask if they’re willing to have sex and how you can help them get in the mood.

“Just ask” may not sound romantic enough, but it worked for the poetic wife in Song of Songs : “Come, my beloved, let us go to the countryside, let us spend the night in the villages” (7:11). Spoiler alert: He said yes.

Pick your pleasure among these five tips or check out my other post on 40 Ways to Initiate Sex with Your Husband, and get things going in your marriage bed!

Q&A with J: “How Can I Orgasm with Penetration?”

Today’s reader question reflects a common goal for many wives: reaching orgasm through intercourse. Here’s what she asks:

I’m not really sure how to ask this in a way that makes sense, but how can my husband and I achieve bringing me to orgasm with his penis or with vaginal penetration? We’ve been married for a few years and have a wonderful love life, but it frustrates me so badly that I can’t seem to orgasm easily unless he uses his hand or mouth. I’m starting to think there is something wrong with me.

It feels amazing when he’s inside, but it doesn’t take too long and I get so sore down there. (not because he isn’t gentle or patient, either.) Do some people just not work they are supposed to? We’ve tried the whole getting me almost there manually before he goes in but by then usually he’s so close it doesn’t take very long before he goes and then it’s really hard to finish me off, although the dear man makes sure we do. What can we try?

Blog post title + fireworks

Let me start with this question: “Do some people just not work [how] they are supposed to?” There’s a myth in there that women are supposed to orgasm through penetration. But studies have reported that 70% or more of women cannot orgasm through intercourse alone.

I recently wrote about the “golden trio” of deep kissing, manual play, and oral sex that seems to best help women achieve climax. Missing from that list of three is intercourse. Why? Because the engagement of our minds and direct stimulation of the clitoris are the two factors more important in getting us to the pleasure peak.

So if you have difficulty getting there through intercourse, please realize that your body might be working just fine. It’s just that we have unrealistic expectations about attaining orgasm with intercourse, based on what we’ve heard, read in romance novels, or seen in TV or movies.

Now let’s go over some questions to consider and some options to try. Because you likely can, one way or another, have a wonderful orgasm during intercourse.

What’s your C-V distance?

The ability to orgasm just with penis-in-vagina (PIV) intercourse seems to be a function of anatomy, specifically the distance between your clitoris and vagina (“C-V distance”). The “magic number,” according to researchers is 2.5 centimeters.

I suppose you can pull out your measuring tape, even enlist your husband to help, and measure to see what your C-V distance is. But one researcher suggests you can get a good sense of your C-V by simply using the “rule of thumb.” The distance from the tip of your thumb to your first knuckle is about 2.5 centimeters. If you’re around or under that distance, you should be able to achieve climax with intercourse.

However, if your C-V is higher, say 3 centimeters or a bit longer than that first thumb joint, then it’s unlikely you’ll climax through intercourse alone. That doesn’t mean you’re broken (see 70% stat above), but that you’ll have to add some additional stimulation.

What positions and angles are you using?

The traditional missionary position is among the worst for a woman to climax. Since an intercourse orgasm relies on indirect stimulation of the clitoris with his penis, the angle at which he penetrates and thrusts determines how much clitoral contact she feels.

If you’re lying in the missionary position, you can move your hips and legs to bring your clitoral head closer to the action, thus making it more likely that his penis will make contact there. I talk about this stuff in more detail in chapters on positions, what to do with your hips, and what to do with your legs in my book, Hot, Holy, and Humorous: Sex in Marriage by God’s Design.

But other positions might work very well for you. Some women report PIV entry from behind as being more stimulating or woman on top allowing her to “grind” against him more. Test out different positions and angles and see which ones give you the most pleasure.

Do you have enough lubrication?

You say it feels amazing when he’s inside, but then you struggle with quickly getting sore. This could happen because you’re going at it for so long, chasing that elusive climax. But it could also be that your body runs out of lubrication. In which case, you should consider what you can do to remedy that.

Lack of lubrication is often a function of hormones, which is why it’s a struggle for many menopausal women. But it’s also a challenge at certain times in a woman’s cycle, meaning you might have an easier time climaxing through intercourse when you are ovulating. Also, if you’re taking oral contraception or on certain medications, they could affect your body’s ability to lubricate sufficiently.

If this is part of the issue, keep personal lubricant handy, apply it liberally, and add it as needed. He can always pull out, add some lubrication to his penis, and then thrust back in. Even if you do this a few times, it could help you go long enough to get to the climax without discomfort.

Why not add manual stimulation?

There is zero wrong with adding stimulation to get you over the edge. Likely, the best way to do this is to get you close to climax, or even have one climax already, and then have your husband penetrate. After that, he can add his hand, or you can add your own, to directly stimulate the clitoral head (the part of your clitoris that sticks out under the clitoral hood).

Get in a position that allows access to the clitoral head. Just a few choices include:

  • “Doggy style” (which fellow blogger Chris Taylor recently suggested we rename “stallion style,” a definite improvement), with your legs far enough apart for him to wrap his hand around or you to reach
  • Adapted missionary with your legs spread far apart, even like a butterfly yoga pose, so that your clitoral head is exposed for touching
  • “Cowgirl” (woman on top) with your hips tilted forward so he can view and reach your clitoral head

Christian Friendly Sex Positions even has an entire section on positions that allow access for manual clitoral stimulation you can check for ideas.

And those who are screaming at me right now, “A vibrator! You can use a vibrator!” Yes, you can use a bullet style vibrator as well to stimulate your clitoral head. I’m personally a fan of first seeing what magic you can work with your hands, but this is a good option for wives who have tried various options and still struggle to reach climax.

Is adding additional stimulation “cheating”? Or somehow less fulfilling than having a climax through intercourse alone? No. It’s engaging in sexual intimacy that is mutually arousing and satisfying to both of you.

You might be able to someday orgasm through intercourse alone … and you might not. Either way, you can orgasm with your husband inside you. And that produces the same wonderful sensations of your vagina spasming around his penis. That’s pretty great stuff, however it happens.

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Great place to purchase personal lubricant! (Affiliate Link)

Are Women Meant to be “Sex Objects”?

Over the years, I’ve engaged in a few debates in the comments section of my blog. Most of the time, myself and the commenter can clarify our thoughts, find areas of agreement, and walk away feeling like we might not be on the same page but it’s all good anyway. (At least that’s how I feel about it.)

But a few topics trigger a more visceral response in me, because they’re aren’t simply disagreements but, I believe, harmful statements. Today, I want to tackle the term “sex object.”

I have been told repeatedly by men — Christian men — that women are meant to be sex objects and that this term is a compliment. Let’s take an honest look at those statements:

  1. Women are meant to be sex objects.
  2. Calling a woman a “sex object” is a compliment.

Blog post title + illustration of man with binoculars, and the lenses read "WOW"

Why some men say that yes, women are sex objects.

I’ve read articles from both Christian and secular men who argue that women are supposed to be sex objects for men. Indeed, those who use the Bible to make their point argue it’s God-given nature for a man to see a woman as a sex object.

Their case come down to these claims:

  1. “Object” merely means something that can be seen and touched, and women qualify.
  2. We use objects and people for our purposes all the time (e.g., using a stylist for a haircut or a mechanic for a car repair).
  3. Men are visual, so their “use” of people can and will involve looking at women for the purpose of sexual arousal or appreciation.
  4. Since sex is part of marriage, husbands will and should look at their wives as sex objects — something tangible used to stimulate and satisfy sexual desire.
  5. Being viewed as a sex object is thus a compliment, because it shows a woman is useful for one of her primary purposes for men and in marriage.

Here’s the first problem — you’re defining the wrong thing.

Sometimes the meaning of a term is different from the two words that make it up. Consider how “table” could mean all kinds of things (conference table, pool table, bedside table), but when I tell my son to take his plate to the “dinner table,” he’s missed the point if he sets up to eat at a ping-pong table.

Likewise, “sex object” has its own definition, separate from “object.” Here’s how dictionaries define sex object:

  • “a person regarded by another only in terms of their sexual attractiveness or availability
    (Oxford).
  • “a person viewed or treated as a means of obtaining sexual gratification” (Collins).
  • “a person regarded especially exclusively as an object of sexual interest” (Merriam-Webster)
  • “a person viewed as being of little interest or merit beyond the potential for providing sexual gratification” (Random House).
  • “someone who is valued only as a sexual partner or for being sexually attractive” (MacMillan).

These definitions focus on treating someone as their value being mostly or entirely wrapped up in their sexual attraction or ability to gratify the person looking at them.

“Sex object” doesn’t say, “I recognize you as a person apart from your ability to satisfy me,” but rather views the person through a purely selfish and sexual perspective.

Sex object doesn't say, 'I recognize you as a person apart from your ability to satisfy me,' but rather views the person through a purely selfish and sexual perspective. Click To Tweet

Secondly, we don’t “use” people all the time — or at least shouldn’t.

Yes, we make use of services and products provided by others, but we don’t walk into a shop or an office unaware that this person has a life outside their chosen vocation. I certainly hope my readers don’t think I exist merely to dole out sex advice, even though that’s exactly the role I play in many of their lives.

Moreover, to compare the way I use a fork to the way I use my hairstylist is insulting. As if I cannot distinguish that those made in God’s image are on a different level of intrinsic value. Jesus said in Matthew 6:25-26: “Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” We use food and clothes, but God says confirms our lives and our bodies are more valuable than that.

So yes, we can use the services and objects people offer, but we shouldn’t use them. In a marriage, you might say we make use of the sexual gifts we offer one another — for arousal and gratification — but your spouse has deeper value.

Men are visual, but sight is not their only input.

I believe it’s generally true that men are more visual, although women certainly can be visual too. So when someone makes an argument that a man is more likely to notice a women’s appearance, I buy that. What I don’t buy is that all of his other senses and his ability to think about anything but appearance flat-line in that moment.

How do I know this isn’t true? Because men see absolutely gorgeous female relatives in an entirely different way. (And if they don’t, we rightly condemn that perspective.) Now of course, this comes far more naturally with relatives. However, I’m merely establishing here that men can attend to other factors as well.

But Proverbs 11:22 advises against seeing only the physical aspect of women: “Like a gold ring in a pig’s snout is a beautiful woman who shows no discretion.” If the Bible didn’t think men could rely on something other than the visual, why bother giving the warning?

An emotionally healthy, spiritually holy man can discern that a woman is beautiful while appreciating other aspects of her. Indeed, this is how all the wonderful husbands I know act toward their wives. Hey, it’s perfectly fine to view one’s spouse as attractive and sexy, but that’s not everything about them. Indeed, your spouse’s appeal will be greater if they are also the kind of person you enjoy being around.

Sexual desire and sexual objectification in marriage aren’t the same.

Those who argue husbands will and should look at their wives as sex objects because they are used to stimulate and satisfy sexual desire miss something big: that desire and objectification are not the same.

Objectification is “the action of degrading someone to the status of a mere object,” while desire can be defined as a “strong sexual feeling or appetite.” And which one does the Bible use? “I belong to my beloved, and his desire is for me” (Song of Songs 7:10). Thank heavens it didn’t say, “I belong to my husband, and he objectifies me.”

Now a legitimate point I’ve heard from husbands is that when they say, “sex object,” they mean “object of my desire.” I get that, and I believe that’s what some of them intend to say.

Except that’s not what “sex object” means — see definitions above. It’s like one day discovering that it’s not “intensive purposes” but “intents and purposes”; sure, you meant the right thing, but you should still correct your choice of words to convey your meaning accurately.

“Sex object” is not a compliment to most women.

Perhaps the most iconic “sex object” ever was Marilyn Monroe. Admittedly, she played up her sexuality for the sake of her career and likely enjoyed some of the attention she received as a result. But even she understood it’s not really a compliment: “That’s the trouble, a sex symbol becomes a thing. I just hate to be a thing!”

'That's the trouble, a sex symbol becomes a thing. I just hate to be a thing!' - Marilyn Monroe | Are Women Meant to Be Sex Objects? Click To Tweet

Whether it’s something a man understands or not, most of us ladies do not want to be thought of as a thing, a symbol, a sex object. While I encourage wives to own their beauty and sexuality, it’s only one part of us. We’re many-layered beings with so much to appreciate, including but definitely not limited to our sexual appeal to our husbands.

And for heaven’s sakes, men, don’t tell a woman how she should feel about you ascribing this phrase to her. That’s like slapping someone and saying, “You should like it.” Because it’s a verbal slap to many women, so of course we don’t like it.

A wife should absolutely be the focus of her husband’s sexual desire, but she is neither his nor anyone else’s “sex object.” Because she’s not an object. She’s a child a God, a daughter of the King.

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5 Tips for Choosing a Personal Lubricant

There’s a line in “Jungle Love” by the Steve Miller Band: “Everything’s better when wet.” Well, I don’t know about everything, but that’s certainly true for sex!

However, things don’t always get as lubricated down there as they need to for sexual activity to feel as good as it could. For instance, certain times of the month, perimenopause / menopause, and other issues can throw off the natural system of lubrication.

Thank goodness we have the ability to add personal lubricant to the mix in our marriage beds! And today I want to give five quick tips on choosing a personal lubricant for the sexual intimacy in your marriage.

Blog post title + water splash border

1. Figure out your goal.

If you asked me for a lube recommendation, I’d first ask why you want a personal lubricant. Because which one works best depends on the goal.

If your hormones are making lubrication difficult, I’d steer you toward a silicone lube rather than a water-based one, because water-based absorbs more quickly. If you’re looking to add a perk to oral sex, of course I’d say to get a flavored lube. If you’ve had issues with infections, I’d advise you to check ingredients and find an organic, all-natural option.

Thinking about why you want lubricant will help you decide which alternatives are best.

2. Pick a type of lube.

Once you know your goal, you can better choose a type. Types of personal lubricant include water-based, silicone-based, and oil-based. I break down each in this post: Q&A with J: A Guide to Using Personal Lubricant.

When deciding type, you’ll want to look at issues like these:

  • Water-based lube is easy to apply and clean up, but doesn’t last as long.
  • Silicone-based lasts longer and is especially good for sexual activity in water, but sticks longer and is harder to clean up.
  • Coconut oil is all-natural, but has a tendency to break down the latex in condoms.
  • Lubes that purport to warm or stimulate could be exciting or discomforting, depending on your skin.
  • Check ingredients carefully if you have allergies or sensitivities to certain substances.

Figure out the type of lube, and then you can start shopping.

3. Find a quality brand.

Like you, I don’t want to spend money on a product that costs $10 when the $5 one is just as good. That said, there’s a distinct difference between the budget lubricants and middle-to-higher priced brands. Look for a quality brand because:

  1. You’re only using a little bit each time, so even a small bottle lasts a while.
  2. You’ll end up using more with a budget brand anyway because it won’t do its job well and you’ll have to apply extra, and then you’re not actually saving money.
  3. Girlfriend, this is your va-jay-jay. Don’t you think you can spend as much on it as you would a restaurant meal?

Now, despite writing about sex as much as I do, I have not tried every brand of lubricant. (Unless they all send me samples, that would get expensive.) But of those I’ve tried, I consistently recommend Sliquid and Good Clean Love. I’ve also heard good things about Swiss Navy and Slippery Stuff. But do a little research, and you can figure out what’s worth trying.

4. Decide where to shop.

Part of what brand you buy depends on where you shop. Admittedly, if you go to Amazon, you’ll find nearly every option there. But if you head to your grocery store, you won’t find Sliquid but you might find Good Clean Love. Then again, you might rather purchase online so you don’t run into your child’s Sunday school teacher while standing in line with your tube of lube. Regardless, your actual choices will depend on where you buy.

Now I’m a fan of purchasing from Christian-based online retailers, because (1) they specifically carry products that promote the marriage bed, (2) they are picky about what they stock so what you find there is typically high quality, and (3) they affiliate with websites like mine so you can bless a ministry while you’re at it. Two options I endorse are:

Honoring Intimates sells lingerie, as well as lubricants and other intimacy aids.

Honoring Intimates Logo

Affiliate Link for Hot, Holy & Humorous

Marriage Spice carries a range of marital aids and intimacy products, including lube.

Marriage Spice Logo

Affiliate Link for Sex Chat for Christian Wives Podcast

5. Try different lubes.

If you use a lube and don’t love it, try something else. Or simply try something else to branch out and have options. For example, you might use coconut oil most of the time but keep one flavored lubricant around just for those times when oral is on the menu. Or you might prefer water-based but want a silicone-based lube on hand if you decide to go for shower sex.

Honestly, you probably won’t find your favorite personal lubricant on the first try. It may take trial-and-error. That said, I bet you and you spouse can think of plenty of ways to conduct this personal research!

Now go do something that requires you pull out some lube. You might find your weekend really is better when wet!

Where to Shop for Lingerie

Sometimes, I get questions on where to shop for lingerie. People express concerns like:

  1. Finding sensual yet comfortable options
  2. Having a variety of sizes to choose from
  3. Not being exposed to scantily dressed women in ads or examples
  4. Not financing other problematic products

Admittedly, while Victoria’s Secret makes a quality bra, you cannot walk into that store without seeing models dressed and posed in provocative ways. And then there was the time I walked into a franchise lingerie and sex toy store, which had some nice options mixed in with who wears this? stuff…but the room in the back filled with porn movies made me back out of that place faster than a Fast & Furious race.

So what are some other places you can shop? Here are some ideas.

Blog post title + vintage-looking lingerie on a hanger stand

Boutique stores.

Sometimes a local boutique store has great options, as well as sales personnel who specialize in helping you find something that will flatter your form. Living in the Houston area, I certainly know that a few such alternatives can be found here.

Given the size of these shops, they’re unlikely to offer a lot of options. However, the quality of what they sell tends to be higher, meaning that the lingerie will probably be more comfortable and durable. As well as pricier, as I’m sure you figured.

Department stores.

Your local department store isn’t likely to have super-revealing ads or posters, even in the lingerie section. And they will have a wider variety than boutique stores, both in styles and sizes. Cost will depend on what level of department store you go to, but you can likely find something in your price bracket.

Also, for those nervous about shopping for lingerie, it can be a little less awkward to walk into a big department store and then go into that section. That way, if your Sunday school teacher spots you, you can just say, “Oh, I’m here to get socks, but I just wandered over to this department.” Albeit, if you’re holding up a sheer negligee with a big grin on your face, he ain’t gonna believe you. #CaughtRedHanded

Discount stores.

Stores like Target and Walmart are not considered department stores, but rather discount stores. Yet they have lingerie sections. Personally, I like the convenience of shopping for groceries, office supplies, toiletries, and lingerie all in the same shopping trip!

Indeed, you might be surprised what you can find on the lingerie racks of a discount store. And again, you won’t find a lot of revealing images displayed. Plus, it’s a pretty safe bet that your purchase won’t break your pocketbook.

Online Christian Retailers.

In the last several years, Christian-owned online stores have cropped up to provide marital aids, intimacy resources, and attractive lingerie. One wonderful feature is they display lingerie items on mannequins, rather than live models. I like that — both because you can easily turn the screen to your husband and say, “What do you think of this one?” without giving him an eyeful of flesh and because it keeps you from comparing your body to the woman wearing the negligee.

I’ve looked at quite a few online stores, and I finally found one I’m excited to endorse: Honoring Intimates. Honoring Intimates has a nice array of options, a good spread of sizes, reasonable prices, and good customer attention. In fact, they actually remove the manufacturer tag and add their own tag with a Song of Solomon theme. Yes, I purchased from them and had an excellent experience all the way around. I encourage y’all to check them out for yourselves.

Affiliate Link

Honoring Intimates is also a great place to find something for that next bridal lingerie shower you attend. Not only would the recipient get a lovely item, they would have that reminder that God is a proponent of hot and holy sex in marriage.

And if you want to learn about how to shop for lingerie, I have a section on just that in my book, Hot, Holy, and Humorous: Sex in Marriage by God’s Design. Check it out!

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