Category Archives: Sexual Intimacy Encouragement

10 Questions to Ask about Your (Mature) Sex Life

Have you ever seen an article or book on questions for newlyweds? I’ve seen many great ideas on discussion topics for newly married couples to get to know one another better, to align their dreams and plans, and to prepare for potential pitfalls in the future.

Someone recently challenged Paul Byerly of The Generous Husband to write ten questions for “oldlyweds.” He did so here, and then challenged other members of the Christian Marriage Bloggers Association (CMBA) to do the same.

I got to thinking about questions specifically for your sexual intimacy. With over 20 years of marriage under my belt, I can tell you that sex is not the same now as it was when we were first married. No, it didn’t die. It’s even better in quality. But it is different, and we spouses might want to ask ourselves a few questions as we age about our marriage bed.

While not a oldlywed — more like a middlywed– here are ten questions I suggest discussing with your spouse about your mature sex life and why I think you should ask them.

Title + blue and pink speech bubbles

1. How has our sexual intimacy changed since our early days of marriage?

Identify where you’ve improved or where you’ve fallen off. And guess what? Your impression may not be the same as your spouse. Find out what they believe and how they feel about the changes.

2. What do I do that really turns you on?

Ask that when you’re newlyweds, and you might just hear, “Everything.” But have hundreds or thousands of lovemaking experiences, and you have quite a variety of actions and sensations and knowledge about what gets you really revving. Maybe your spouse knows exactly what it is, but maybe he doesn’t. In fact, you could ask this like a Newlywed Game question and each write down what you think turns on your spouse most and what turns you on most, then swap answers. You might be surprised.

3. What do I do in that you wish I’d change?

I have a friend who’s been married for a few years, and her husband honestly believes grabbing her boob is a legitimate way to get her aroused. How could he not know that ain’t the ticket to Paradise City?! Yet we get into our habits and loving spouses overlook what annoys them, and then decades in how do they convincingly tell us that go-to move needs to go to the trash heap? Or you may be missing ways that speak intimate love to your spouse. So ask this question, accept what your spouse says, and make a change.

You may be missing ways that speak intimate love to your spouse. Click To Tweet

4. What do you most enjoy about my body?

Your body is older, so things are shifting, wrinkling, sagging. But while objectively you might have looked your best at age 30, your body is still amazing and appealing to your spouse. So share what you each adore about the body you get to see, touch, and pleasure. We ladies especially might appreciate the reassurance.

5. Is there anything we haven’t done in the bedroom that you’d like to try?

I’ve written before about whether you should share your sexual fantasy and whether you have to go along with your spouse’s sexual fantasy. But most of the time, when you ask this question, it isn’t as big a deal as you might think. Several years into sexual intimacy, you should find yourselves more comfortable expressing a few outside-the-box ideas and more attuned to what your spouse would be willing to do.

6. What’s your best memory of us having sex?

Just as I wrote that question, I immediately started thinking how I’d answer. A few particularly memorable lovemaking sessions came to mind, and I bet you have your own. Why not reminisce together about the times that made you feel extra good and extra special?

7. What do you most like to do after we have sex?

Intimacy fostered by sex shouldn’t evaporate right after you’ve finished. Talk about your favorite ways to bask in the afterglow. Then make those happen more often.

8. What’s the funniest moment we’ve had during sex?

At this point in your marriage, you’ve realized things happen in bed that you need to have a sense of humor about, so give yourselves a bit of comic relief. Being able to laugh with each other strengthens your bond, and a sense of playfulness in the bedroom can deepen your enjoyment.

9. How do you expect our sexual intimacy to change in the next five, ten, or twenty years?

The apostle Paul said, “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13-14). What’s past has happened, but you can press on toward holiness and happiness in your future, even in the marriage bed. Take stock together of what that might look like and what challenges you might face.

You can press on toward holiness and happiness in your future, even in the marriage bed. Click To Tweet

10. What do you most cherish about being one flesh?

But this question is your opportunity to express what sex really means to you. How does sex express and reflect you two being one flesh?

Ask some questions, and remember to really listen to your spouse’s answers. Don’t judge or defend, but discuss. Make your marriage a safe place to express what you feel and believe. That’s another kind of intimacy, and worth cultivating.

Shout out to my husband, who provided questions 7 and 10! Spock’s a smart cookie. 😉

What other discussion questions about sex do you suggest for a mature couple?

Other CMBA bloggers who responded to the challenge:

The Forgiven Wife: 10 Questions (for a Husband Who Doesn’t Like Questions)

The Generous Wife: 10 Questions for AnyTime-Weds

When “I Feel…” Statements Don’t Work

I can’t begin to tell you the number of times I’ve heard the suggestion that instead of accusing your spouse of doing something you don’t like, you should re-frame your statement as: When ____ happens, I feel ______.

It’s a bedrock of communication advice, and it was overtly taught in my graduate counseling program. You’ll find this recommendation in marriage and relationship books galore and touted by therapists and psychologists. While I believe this can be great advice in some circumstances, I’ve come to believe it’s not the magic phrase that some seem to imply.

Title with couple on couching facing away from each other

Because I know what’s happening in some of your marriages: You’re frustrated with the sexual intimacy, and so you sit down with your spouse and heed this advice and explain your feelings about the situation. You’re calm, collected, and careful to use those words: When ____ happens, I feel ______. Like When we don’t have sex for two weeks, I feel personally rejected, or When you only touch me when you want sex, I feel used.

After all, if your spouse truly understood your deep feelings on the issue, you suspect they’d see things from a different perspective. After all, they love you, so surely they don’t want you to feel so bad all the time.

Yet it can backfire. And I want to be sensitive to that, and certainly not advise you to do something that could make the sexual intimacy situation in your marriage even more tense.

Here are times when those I feel statements won’t work, and what to try instead:

1. One-uppance. You’ve heard of comeuppance, but I’m calling this one-uppance because it’s the tendency of your spouse to want to one up you on whatever feeling you’re having. So you say: “When ____ happens, I feel ______.” And they answer, “Yeah, well, I feel _____.”

If you’re feeling rejected, they’re feeling exploited. If you’re feeling put upon, they’re feeling ignored. If you’re feeling mistreated, they’re feeling like divorce is imminent if things keep going the way they have. You can barely risk sharing a feeling, because you’ll immediately hear how their emotional pain tops yours.

What can you do? As hard as it is, maybe you can listen to and validate their concerns. Maybe you can say something like, “It sounds like we both have some issues here. I’d really like us to work them out.” Maybe once they feel heard, they can hear you better. Even if their issue is 10% of the problem, and yours is 90% of what’s really happening, remember the Golden Rule: Treat others the way you want to be treated. (See Matthew 7:12.) Take their concerns seriously, let them know you care, and then ask for them to listen to your issues as well.

2. Pooh-poohed. You share the trigger scenario and how it makes you feel, and your feeling gets pooh-poohed — belittled, discounted, brushed off. Your spouse argues that you shouldn’t feel that way. That your feeling is wrong or silly or a figment of your imagination.

Oftentimes it’s a lack of empathy, being able to put yourself in someone else’s shoes — or body parts, as the case may be. Since they would not feel that way under similar circumstances, they flat-out don’t understand why you do. So the answer, in their mind, is for you to just stop feeling that way. For instance, if you feel unloved because you haven’t had sex in three weeks, you should just turn off that feeling because it doesn’t relate at all to what they understand.

What can you do? Explain how your feelings work. For instance, in a recent conversation with my hubby, he said (for the 10,725th time), “Stop worrying about that.” I finally looked at him and said, “I have no idea what that looks like.” Then I explained that, while that was an achievable goal for his male brain, I couldn’t just flip a switch like that. Once I let him know that his way was fine but it didn’t work for me and why, he was able to feel compassion and show patience with my situation. Just work toward building empathy by letting your hubby know how things work in your world, without dissing his world.

By the way, I believe some husbands pooh-pooh their wives’ feelings like this, not because they don’t care, but because it makes them supremely uncomfortable to see you hurting. In an effort to make the emotional pain end quickly, they suggest that you stop feeling that way. I just want you to understand that sometimes, it really does come from a place of love.

3. Seeing an Iceberg. Icebergs are peculiar things: 87% of their mass is underwater, so that you only see about one-eighth of what really exists. And that’s how some spouses treat let’s talk moments. You decide to share your “When ____ happens, I feel ______” statement, and what you get back is a reaction to the 87% of things you didn’t say. Whether or not they’re true.

Here’s an example: You say, “When you don’t make any effort for me to have an orgasm, I feel disappointed and like my sexual satisfaction doesn’t matter.” And he responds, “So sex is disappointing to you, and you’re not satisfied. Clearly, I’m not enough for you. You’d obviously rather be with someone else!” Say what?! Yet, some of you have experienced a similar conversation, and I say with true Southern honesty: Bless. Your. Heart.

What can you do? Stay calm, and let them know that those are not the issues at hand. You can also reassure them that their fears are unfounded (e.g., “You are the only one I want, but I want our sexual intimacy to thrive”). Then go back to the issue at hand. Too often we want to put our whole marriage on trial, when cases are one fact by fact, witness by witness. Let them know that you just want to deal with this one issue. If he wants to deal with other issues later, you’re open to discussing them at another time … and then follow-up.

4. DNA. You can’t argue with DNA, right? Which is why it’s such a handy argument to pull out when your spouse expresses a feeling that might require you to change. You begin with, “When ____ happens, I feel ______,” and your spouse responds that what you’re wanting isn’t the person they are. They were made differently, and you should just accept who they are.

If they have a nonexistent sex drive, that’s just the way God made them. If they have a ravenous need for sexual variety, it’s in their DNA. If they are uncomfortable with certain acts, that have no biblical commands or principles against them, it’s just who they are. Your feelings might not be good, but how is your spouse supposed to do something different to make you feel better when they’re dealing with hard-wired DNA.

What can you do? First, you can appeal to your own DNA, because why should only one of you get to claim that “that’s just how I am.” Although, frankly, that might end up in more argument. Perhaps you can get your spouse to recognize some other way in which they have changed for the better. Or even how you‘ve changed for the better? “Remember when I used to get angry about you leaving your coffee cups all over the house. But then I made a conscious effort to be patient and more loving. I’m still me, but a better me. What if sex is that way too? What if we could change a little bit toward each other and be more loving and connected?” If we can recognize the ways in which we have indeed changed in our lives, through decision and commitment, maybe we can take a baby step or two in the right direction.

Of course, my suggestions are also not guarantees. But I know that some of you have ended up in conversations like the ones I’ve described. And since I want to be as honest as possible about how to make headway in your marriage, I thought it would be useful to address this topic.

If you’re having conversations that end up like these, rethink your approach. Decide ahead of time how you’ll deal with your spouse’s protests, defensiveness, or frustration. And don’t give up! As inventor Thomas Edison famously said, “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”aybe ol’ Thomas had read Galatians 6:9: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”

Source: United States Coast Guard – How Much of an Iceberg is Underwater

What Makes You Feel Sexy?

I’ve been listening to Spanish radio.

This is an odd choice because I speak only a little Spanish. But I was looking for musical playlists for when I write and discovered that listening to a song in a foreign language worked well. I enjoyed the tunes, but wasn’t distracted by the lyrics. Then I fell in love with a few specific songs, checked their translations to make sure they weren’t explicit, and downloaded those to my MP3 player.

So last night, as I was listening to Juan Magan, Gente de Zona, etc. and salsa dancing in my kitchen, I thought, This makes me feel sexy. It wasn’t the lyrics, but the way I was moving my body to the music. It put me in touch with the shape of my body, my feminine form, and how it moves. It made me appreciate God’s handiwork and mirrored the body awareness I have when making love with my husband.

I got to thinking: What other activities might make a wife feel sexy? Do we know?

With a woman's dancing feet

It’s a good question. Because maybe dancing doesn’t do it for you. Maybe it’s something else.

It’s likely several things.

I’m not talking about what gets you aroused. (Although it might.) Rather, I’m thinking about what makes you feel good about your body, your sensuality, your sexuality. Things like bubble baths, body massages, lotion applied to your skin by your husband, sleeping naked, some forms of exercise, aromatherapy, etc.

Those little things we do for ourselves can put us into better contact with our bodies and make us feel more sexy both in the moment and in our marriages. We come away feeling like a woman who is worth making love to and who can bask in physical pleasure.

I’ve talked plenty before about awakening your senses. When readying yourself for sexual intimacy, I believe it’s very important to do two things:

1. Relax. I’m not talking about that feeling you get right before you fall asleep, when your whole body is a jellied lump of flesh. This isn’t the last part of the yoga class where you’re supposed to lie there and imagine some peaceful setting and let all your muscles loosen. (I can’t do that yoga thing anyway, because right after I picture that placid lake, three water skiers go careening by, followed by a motor boat and a party pontoon. But maybe that’s just me…) I’m talking about stepping away from the daily demands of your life, taking time for self-care, and easing into a different role. Relaxing your brain. Which is a challenge for many women.

And I can honestly say that when I’m listening to music and dancing, my brain is not mulling over my to-do list or caught up in the latest political controversy. I’m pretty relaxed. I feel the same with certain other activities, like soaking in a hot bath while reading a book or digging my feet into the sand on the beach. These relaxing activities also make me aware of my body, which brings me to…

2. Awaken. Seemingly paradoxical, you have to awaken other parts of yourself — the parts that feed into feeling sexy. This isn’t just your lady parts, gals. Rather, it includes your five senses. With special attention paid to your skin, which has like a billion receptors or something.

You also want to lean into appreciating your femininity, whatever that looks like for you. I used to feel not-so-feminine, because I wasn’t quite as elegant or delicate as many women I knew. But you have all the features of a woman, and there is plenty to embrace about your own femininity. You have curves — yes, whether you’re a hourglass figure, an athletic build, or apple-shaped, you have curves. Own them, love them. You have sensitivities in places where men don’t, and you should enjoy those. You are built differently and beautifully.

Song of Songs says, “Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires” (3:5, 8:4). But when you’re married, Love desires to be awakened. So go ahead and arouse it, awaken it, embrace it.

Figure out what makes you feel sexy. Then do those things.

For myself, I’ve decided I need to dance more. But I’ve also made a list of other activities that help me appreciate my body and my sex appeal to my husband. Just my own list of 5 Ways to Feel Sexy, with actions I should take more often and more enthusiastically. I suspect my marriage bed benefit.

How about you make your own list? Any ideas to share with others?

LAUNCHING OFFICIALLY TOMORROW! CLICK BANNER TO LEARN MORE.

Sex Chat for Christian Wives Has Launched!

♥ Happy Valentine’s Day! ♥

Whether you’re celebrating in style or simply displaying everyday romance to your spouse, may your day be an enjoyable one!

And if you’re looking for something to spark your mood or just help you on path toward greater sexual intimacy, it’s our official launch day! Sex Chat for Christian Wives podcast has gone live, and we have three episodes you can listen to right now.
SCFCW We've Launched with Sketched Rocket

We’re pretty excited about our content!

Episode 1 is on Getting in the Mood.

Episode 2 is about Sexual Positions.

Episode 3 addresses 50 Shades of Here-We-Go-Again.

A few have mentioned our not-yet-stellar audio quality. Yes, I realize that there is some background noise and reverberation. And I’m sorry for the inconvenience on your end.

Frankly, we are four working-from-home wives with limited time and a limited budget, and we are still gathering recording savvy, audio editing skills, and equipment to improve our sound. We genuinely hope you’ll stick with us as we continue to develop. Much like our blogs — Hot Holy & Humorous, The Forgiven Wife, OysterBed7and Calm.Healthy.Sexy. — we started with what we had and will prioritize becoming more and more professional in our presentation. But the substance itself is well worth the listen. And I can tell our recordings are improving with the knowledge we’ve gained.

Remember to connect with Sex Chat for Christian Wives through any/all of the following:

Website
iTunes
SoundCloud
Stitcher
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest
Instagram

More episodes are coming!

And thanks to you who have already listened. It’s pretty amazing to look and see that, as of publishing this post, we’ve already had 1270 downloads!

We pray that we will find the audience who needs to hear our message about the gift of sexual intimacy in marriage as God intended. We want to reach as many wives as possible.

Q&A with J: Answering Your Questions about the Podcast

While I would love to answer another personal question from a reader, this week has honestly been inundated with tasks leading up to our podcast debut. As often happens with new endeavor, a great deal of work goes into preparation, and things smooth out after the project is launched. Since answering personal questions are the most time-consuming posts I write — because I usually mull over my answer, pray about the situation, and do more research — I don’t want to shortchange anyone’s question.

Instead, I’ve decided to answer questions I’ve been asked about our upcoming podcast, Sex Chat for Christian Wives, which is coming next Tuesday, February 14.

Answering Your Questions about the Podcast with sketched microphone

Where can I find the podcast?

We’re working to get our podcast to every distributor we can. You can already find us on iTunes, Stitcher, Pocket Casts, and SoundCloud. We’ll soon be on Google Play and iHeart Radio as well. Regardless, if you head to our website, forchristianwives.com, and then look at the top right corner, you’ll see icons you can click on to find our social media sites and podcast providers.

How often will episodes go up?

We have a sneak preview episode up now, and two should follow next week. After that, it will be once every two weeks. At some point, we might become a weekly podcast, but we’ll have to see if all four of us can commit to that in the future.

What are we talking about in the podcast?

If it’s about sex, we’ll talk about it. All from a biblical foundation, of course. So far, we’ve recorded episodes on Getting in the Mood, Sexual Positions, 50 Shades of Here-We-Go-Again, Stress, Sex Scheduling, Female Arousal/Response, Exercise and Sex, and Mismatched Drives. All of these are not ready to be published, but they are in the bag and getting edited for podcast play.

Topics slated for the future include orgasm, body image, and sex toys. In addition, we’ll be answering reader questions from time to time.

How can I send you a question?

You can head to our Have a Question? page on our website and fill in the contact form. You can also use that form to suggest topics.

I think it’s important to note our policy about anonymity: “If we air a response to your question, no personally identifying information will be used. You will be kept anonymous.” Given our subject matter, we believe that’s an important assurance to our readers.

Do I have to type the word sex into my search engine?

Originally, our website was simply sexchatforchristianwives.com, and that’s still our site. But we also bought forchristianwives.com, which will take you to our website as well — because we want to be sensitive to when and where you’re typing in that information.

Why us?

Why are we four women doing this joint endeavor? For several reasons:

  1. We all write about sexual intimacy and are passionate about helping Christian wives figure out this aspect of their marriages.
  2. We come from different backgrounds and experiences, and the sum of our experience is greater than the individual parts — a true benefit for our listeners.
  3. We want to reach out in a new format and to a new group of wives.
  4. Truth be told, no one wanted to do a podcast alone, because we don’t have time to do it all, but the four of us together can handle the work.
  5. We all like each other, and if you’re going into a long-term project together, you should really get along. We truly have fun when we meet on Skype, and we respect one another.

How will I tell your voices apart?

We announce ourselves at the beginning of each podcast, with the idea of listeners associating that voice with the speaker. It might take a few times to sort that out, but having listened to other group podcasts myself, you start being able to pick out who’s who pretty quickly.

Moreover, I’ve now listened to audio of us repeatedly, and I’ve been a little surprised how distinct our voices are. I’ll give you some hints: Chris Taylor‘s voice is a smooth, low alto; Gaye Christmus has a slightly higher alto voice with crisp tones; Bonny Burns is just as chipper as she looks (and sings soprano quite well); and I sound like — oh, I don’t know, me. Honestly, I have a slight Texas twang, so you could try listening for that.

Is the podcast for men too?

No, but we welcome husbands listening. We are aiming this podcast at Christian wives, with the feel of us sitting around a kitchen table with you and discussing our topic for the day. We say things to each other in a way we wouldn’t likely say in mixed company, and our focus is on helping wives improve the sexual intimacy in their marriage.

However, nothing we say is improper to be shared publicly (or we wouldn’t be doing this podcast). And if husbands wish to listen, go right ahead. Hey, I listen to the Art of Manliness podcast; I’m clearly not their intended audience, but the podcast has some good information and helps me to understand men better.

Those are some questions I’ve heard so far. What other questions do you have about the upcoming podcast?