Tag Archives: married sex

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.

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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

Q&A with J: Is It Possible to Have a Great Marriage (and Sex) Long Term?

When I read this question, I immediately knew I had to cover it. Because while the wife describes her specific situation, this is an all-too-common problem.

So my husband and I have only been married about 1 1/2 years. Lately when I’ve been visiting with other married women from church/Sunday school, they complain constantly about their husbands. If I try to say something nice about my husband, it’s met with “you’re newlyweds…just wait.” Its usually followed by an eye roll and a “husband’s just don’t understand” topped off with “I wish he would do”and ” I have no libido.” I know the honeymoon wears off eventually. But I guess I need encouragement that you can still love each other, have sex, and enjoy one another ten years down the road. I don’t want to dread my future marriage, but that’s what I’ve started doing and it’s started to affect the way I treat hubby. I want to start now to invest in the future so we CAN have a good marriage later. I guess I feel like maybe it’s not possible. Thoughts?

Isn’t that so sad? Didn’t your heart just sink at the thought of this young wife standing among Christian women who could be mentors, as Titus 2:3-5 prescribes, and instead they’re bashing their husbands and dismissing this wife’s desire to stay in Christ-like love with her husband.

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Let me say emphatically to you, reader, Yes! You “can still love each other, have sex, and enjoy one another ten years down the road.” And 20 years down the road. And 30, and 40, and…

Is marriage without challenges? Of course not. You’re a sinner, and he’s a sinner, and you just merged your lives — with that equation, something will go wrong at some point. But it is more than possible to have a holy, healthy, and happy marriage. And wouldn’t you think the Church would be the one place where this would be announced from the rooftops?

It is more than possible to have a holy, healthy, and happy marriage. Click To Tweet

After all, Christ himself, when asked about the stiff requirements of salvation, responded, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible” (Matthew 19:26). Shouldn’t we be saying, “With God, a beautiful, intimate marriage is absolutely possible”?

Look, my own marriage hasn’t always been happy, but we’re definitely happy now and we’ve passed that 20-year mark. And I could name many couples who are also happy, committed, and, quite frankly, having sex like bunnies. No, I don’t know all the details, but I have conversations with enough wives and hear from enough spouses through this blog to guarantee that plenty of marriages are not just surviving, but thriving. Even those who’ve been married for decades.

Statistics support this as well. In Shaunti Feldhahn’s book, The Good News about Marriage, she explains how the “half of marriage end in divorce” claim is complete bunk, based entirely on projections that turned out to be wrong. About two-thirds of couples stay together, and among those, statistics show that spouses are largely happy. The University of Chicago NORC posts annual findings on Trends in Psychological Well-Being, and in the latest year reported, 2014, spouses who reported being either “very happy” or “pretty happy” comprised a whopping 96.5%.

Now research also shows that marital satisfaction dips after you have children. That isn’t true for everyone, of course. But I’d feel remiss if I didn’t warn you that bringing a child into your home — if that’s something you and your husband plan to do — can temporarily affect your happiness. It’s not that you don’t adore your children and feel happy to have them in your life; it’s just that there’s stress, exhaustion, differences in parenting styles, etc. that go along with having children. However, if you know where the treacherous waters are, you might well be able to avoid them by being intentional in supporting one another.

As for sex, Sheila Gregoire reported in her excellent book, The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex, that wives had their best sexual intimacy long after they were newlyweds. Not to discount what you’re enjoying right now (enjoy it, sweetheart!), but a decade or two into your marriage, you’ll know each other’s bodies even more and have a history of sexual intimacy that makes you feel even more connected. Quantity of sexual interaction often decreases, but quality increases.

So with all this good news, why are women in church standing around bashing their husbands and shushing the one wife trying to be positive?

I’ve been in that circle with those women. Not your particular women, but wives like that. Here’s how they typically work: One wife says something disparaging about her husband, and another wife is quick to jump in and agree. Now the tone has been set. Women, being relational in nature, want to connect with the people in our midst, so others join in with their own complaints — wanting to show I understand, we’re connected, we’re all in this together. Soon enough, it’s become a husband bashing session, and the way to gain acceptance and approval is to share your own can you believe my husband?! story.

Let me give you some practical suggestions in those moments. Look at the circle and find the woman who isn’t joining in. She might be an ally. When sex became the topic of conversation and I was often the lone voice of sex positivity, I realized someone else in the circle wasn’t talking. If I got that woman alone, I’d often find out that she agreed with me, but she just didn’t feel comfortable speaking up. So it turned out that I wasn’t alone. Sometimes that woman was even two women or three women or more. Cultivate those friendships and see if you can set a new tone together.

Seek other women who are marriage and sex positive. They’re in your church, because they’re in every church. Oftentimes, they are indeed the quiet ones, because the negative tone has been set by more vocal members. But turn special attention toward older women who’ve been married 25, 40, 50 years. I once sat down at church next to a wife who’d just celebrated her 50th wedding anniversary and simply asked, “What’s the secret to fifty years?” Because here was this woman who had golden wisdom, and I wanted it. She wasn’t negative; rather, she was honest, godly, and helpful (she answered, “forgiveness”). Look for those ladies.

Keep speaking positively about your husband. If you maintain your positive attitude and share what’s so great about marriage, eventually they might stop brushing you off and start wondering what you’re doing right. You never know who you might influence with hopefulness and holiness. As Paul so aptly said in 1 Timothy 4:12, “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” Your marriage may be young, but you can still set a good example.

Your marriage may be young, but you can still set a good example. Click To Tweet

Finally, you’ve noticed a difference in how you’re feeling about your marriage and treating your husband. If these conversations continue to injure your marriage, walk away. Your marriage takes priority. The apostle Paul also said, “Do not be misled: ‘Bad company corrupts good character‘” (1 Corinthians 15:33). Wives who continue to bash their husbands and encourage others to do the same seem to me to qualify as “bad company.” Since they are believers, try to alter the tone first, but at some point, you need to do what you must for your marriage.

Also, check out my post on Finding Friends to Support Your Marital Intimacy.

Hopefully you can turn the tide. I’m certainly on your side! I’m a happily married wife, and I know you can be one as well for many, many years to come.

Q&A with J: “What Should We Call Persistent Porn Use?”

Usually on Thursdays, I answer a reader’s question. Today, I want y’all to answer my question. Here it is:

What should we call ongoing and persistent porn use? If you read various marriage blogs, you might have seen some recent discussion about porn “habit” vs. “addiction.” (You can see my post here.) Some say it’s a habit and calling it an addiction makes it harder to fight because that connotes that it’s outside their control. For others, it feels well beyond habit and calling it an addiction prods them to getting the help they need to overcome. 

While I understand that “addiction” isn’t quite the right word, “habit” doesn’t seem enough. At this point, I’m thinking maybe we need a better label. What alternative words could we use to refer to a porn addiction/habit?

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I’ve honestly believed this argument over semantics isn’t nearly as important as just fighting off this evil. But after reading various comments on the subject, I’ve decided it matters to some to use the right words.

Calling it a habit gives some porn users the empowerment they need to gain victory, because then they feel like it’s a behavior they control. For others who have tried to quit, repeatedly and unsuccessfully, labeling it an addiction encourages them to seek the outside help they need to break free.

Honestly, I don’t want to cause problems for either group. I’d hate to think that my word choice inadvertently hindered anyone’s ultimate victory over this terrible temptation.

But what is persistent use of pornography?

Is porn use an addiction?

Substance addictions and persistent porn use have these similarities:

  • Someone else often offers you the first “hit”
  • You try it out of curiosity or intrigue
  • Your body delivers a natural chemical reward
  • You might seek out stronger forms of the substance to receive the same or a more intense effect
  • You experience a mix of good feelings and bad consequences
  • If you try to quit, you may experience resistance or a sense of loss

Chris Taylor of The Forgiven Wife wrote an excellent post on Is Porn Use an Addiction (and Does It Even Matter)? In that article, she also points out:

For a person who is trying to medicate emotional pain, the “high” they feel after using a substance is a respite from their pain. When the effects go away, they often feel worse emotionally—but they don’t know how else to address the pain, so they continue using, again and again.

I also believe many porn producers are like drug dealers, in the way they entice users, offer increasingly intense experiences, and ignore the damage they do users and those around them.

However, recent research studies have shown that persistent porn use doesn’t behave physiologically like an addiction. For instance, in one much-touted study, “subjects who reported experiencing problems as a result of their pornography use did not display characteristically addictive brain activity when viewing sexual images” (The Daily Beast: “Your Porn Addiction Isn’t Real”; Journal of Biological Psychology: “Modulation of late positive potentials by sexual images in problem users and controls inconsistent with ‘porn addiction'”). Rather, some experts propose it’s more analogous to a compulsion (see American Psychological Association: “Is Pornography Addictive?”).

Moreover, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) — the manual used by psychiatrists, psychologists, and counselors to diagnose and treat clients — does not recognize a hypersexual disorder or porn addiction. The experts determined there was insufficient evidence to support these labels and the treatments that would follow.

Is porn use a habit?

Habits and persistent porn use share these similarities:

  • You form them through a system of cue/trigger, routine, and reward (see ABC News: “Science of habits: Understanding why we do what we do”)
  • You reinforce the habit through repetition
  • In anticipating the reward, you create a craving to engage in the routine
  • You link the habit to other environmental triggers (e.g., a certain room in your house or time of the day)
  • Even when the habit is clearly hurting you (or people you love), it’s an entrenched routine you tend to fall back on

According to researcher Dr. Wendy Wood, as you repeat behaviors in the same context, thus forming a habit, your brain shifts from processing in the decision-making center to a sensory motor loop that no longer retains information on the goal or outcome. The result, according to Wood, is “our minds don’t always integrate in the best way possible. Even when you know the right answer, you can’t make yourself change the habitual behavior” (Science Daily: “How we form habits, change existing ones”).

For example, in one interesting study on habits, 98 people watched movie trailers and were given popcorn to munch on, some of it fresh and some of it one week old. Those used to eating popcorn at movies ate the same amount of stale popcorn as fresh, because — even though stale popcorn is yuck — they had an entrenched habit triggered by the environment (LA Times: “People eat out of habit, a study finds, even when food is stale”). That sounds like the persistent porn user who — regardless of how yuck the porn is — feels compelled to watch, because it’s a triggered routine.

The habit argument is laid out well in “Does Your Spouse Have a Porn Addiction or Just a Bad Habit? The Difference Matters!” on Sheila Gregoire’s To Love Honor and Vacuum blog.

Yet, habits run the gamut in whether they’re good, neutral, or bad. Thus, when some hear the word “habit,” they’re more likely to think about how their kid puts his dirty shoes on the couch or their husband leaves the Worcestershire sauce on the wrong refrigerator shelf than someone taking up smoking or losing himself in hours and hours of porn. And calling it merely a habit sounds to some like you’re putting what is adultery of the heart (Matthew 5:28) on the same level as consuming more coffee than you know you should.

Moreover, the suggested way to kick a habit is to change the trigger. But what if the craving is the trigger? Or what if the trigger is something you can’t control, like having a computer (that you need for work, home tasks, etc.) or being sexually refused by your spouse? (This is not blaming the spouse for porn use! That spouse is not responsible, but that action could be something the porn user has in his habit loop.)

Is porn use something else?

I asked on my Facebook page for alternative words, and here are some of the answers:

  • struggle
  • affair
  • sin
  • betrayal
  • self-control problem
  • virtual adultery
  • compulsion
  • bondage
  • trap
  • spiritual stronghold

Let me clarify one more thing. I’m not a licensed counselor, but I went through a graduate program that prepared me to become a counselor, including making diagnoses. I do not contend that porn use can be classified for medical treatment or insurance reimbursement as an addiction, because that is a specific definition in that context.

However, if someone writes me a question or a comment that refers to the person or spouse being “addicted to porn,” I’m not going to argue with them. When your co-worker says, “I’m addicted to coffee,” or your best friend says, “I’m addicted to superhero movies,” or Robert Palmer says, “You might as well face it, you’re addicted to love,” we understand that they’re using “addicted” colloquially. I hope to use more precise language from now on, but quibbling over their terminology still seems far less important to me than providing insight, encouragement, answers, and hope.

Now I hope you’ll chime in! What alternative words could we use to refer to a porn addiction/habit?

Want to Work All Your Muscles? Try Sex.

I was listening to Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me!, the NPR news quiz game show, and they mentioned an odd study about sex. Of course, I had to go look it up.

Title with drawn couple exercising

So here’s what happened: Upbeat Active (a fitness company) commissioned research tracking how many muscles are used for various activities. They learned that texting uses 38 muscles, dancing uses 99 muscles, and cycling to work uses 155 muscles. But the only activity that uses all your muscles, all 657 of them, is sex.

Well, sex if you’re “doing it right.”

How can that be? you ask.

It turns out you use your facial muscles for kissing; abs, chest, diaphragm, and neck to make sound; eye muscles as you look around or at your beloved; lower limbs, pelvis and core, legs, etc. Basically, if you’re really into sex, you’re tightening and exerting all of your muscles.

And the muscle that gives sex its unique status as the All-Muscle Activity is the bulbospongiosus, which — get this — is also known as the “sex hero muscle.” Both men and women have one, and it receives training during male erection and ejaculation, female clitoral erection, and orgasms for both of you.

Did you know you had a “sex hero muscle”? Well, now you do! Drag out your superhero cape and wear it with pride.

But are you currently using all of those muscles with the way you’re having sex? What should that total-body workout look like? Lead researcher Mike Aunger said, “Ideally it should last more than 30 minutes…. But I’ve got no stats on how long sex lasts for [the] average British couple. To be fair, 45 minutes would probably be better.”

Okay, so they’re British, and you’re whatever. However, I bet most married couples don’t go a whole 45 minutes. *sigh* And nice as they can be, quickies apparently don’t give you the full exercise experience.

Regardless, let’s look at a breakdown of the muscles and what actions you can take to use as many as possible:

Pucker up! Kissing exerts your facial muscles. And you don’t just have to kiss his lips. You’ve can come up with other smooch targets on his body.

Make noise. They say moaning uses your diaphragm, chest, and other muscles. It makes me wonder what yelling, “You’re my Superman!” does for a gal. (Asking for a friend.)

Leave the lights on. Your eye muscles get a work out, as you check out the view and your eyes dart around — that is, if you leave the lights on and can actually see. If you don’t like full light, try low lights or candlelight.

Move your neck. You’ll do it anyway, but it’s on the list of muscles that get worked out as you rotate or flex your head, look down and up, raise your shoulders … and so on. Maybe it’s a good thing when your kid knocks on your door, making you jerk your head up and respond, “Um, we’ll be out in a minute” — uses those neck muscles at least.

Try different positions. Your lower limbs get a better workout with interesting positioning. Your quads, biceps femoris (backsides of your thighs), and calves will thank you. For ideas, check out our Sex Chat for Christian Wives podcast on sex positions.

Thrust. Okay, ladies, you don’t really thrust like your hubby does. But your pelvic and core muscles will be exerted if you engage your hips more in sexual activity. Tilt, swivel, and shift down there, and try woman-on-top from time to time, where you can take a lead role.

Use your arms. Your arm and shoulder muscles get more use in certain positions. That’s what the article I read mentioned, but it didn’t give specifics. But we can imagine that some positions require you to hold yourself in place. I also suggest stroking and caressing your hubby, maybe even massaging him where he likes.

Grip something. Your hand muscles get a workout when you grab something, like your husband’s shoulders or hips … or even something lower.

Let your heart pound. You don’t have to think about this one, because your heart muscle will do its own thing, getting a good workout during sex. But maybe you can at least appreciate how hard it’s pounding and that it’s a good thing for your health.

Go for the orgasm. That sex hero muscle (aka bulbospongiosus) does its thing when you’re in the throes of passion, with a clitoral erection and waves of pleasure we know as orgasm. So go for it! It’s good for you.

Now go forth and get healthy, y’all! See how many muscles you can use. If you’re “doing it right,” whatever that means, you’ll be giving all 657 muscles a healthy bit of exertion. And even if a muscle or two gets missed, you’ll be enjoying yourself. You’re welcome.

Sources: NPR: ‘Wait Wait’ For March 4 2017: With Not My Job Guest Jordan PeeleThe Telegraph-UK: Sexercise: 657 reasons why the ultimate workout happens between the sheets; Daily Mail.com: From texting to having sex: The ultimate full-body workout to flex your muscles WITHOUT hitting the gym

Q&A with J: “What Are the 7 Erogenous Zones?”

This was such an intriguing reader question, I just had to answer it.

Hey there 🙂 I have a question and thought since you’re so knowledgeable you could help. There’s a friends episode where Monica teaches chandler about the 7 basic erogenous zones. If you haven’t seen it just google. My question is….what are those 7 zones?!

Title with man and woman head silhouettes

When Friends aired, I was a fan. Unfortunately, the series got more PG-13-ish the longer it ran, so I fell off watching after a while. But I definitely remember the characters. Here’s the clip this reader refers to (and this is not a video you want your kids to watch with you):

Monica’s statement that “everybody knows the basic erogenous zones” is obviously overstated. Even the two other people in the scene didn’t know exactly what Monica was talking about.

But what are these seven erogenous zones? Wouldn’t it be nice to know?

And so the internet has pondered this question. Not only can you Google for this video, you can run a search for “Monica’s 7 erogenous zones” and several articles and chats will appear with people conjecturing which areas of the female body are the most erotic.

Ultimately, we don’t know what Monica was talking about. Because this was just a bit — a comedy bit. Maybe the writers in the room had seven places in mind, but I doubt it. Having written a few stories myself, I know that sometimes hints are more effective than complete explanations. This is an example, because this scene got people wondering what Monica sketched on that pad and talking about this episode with others. More buzz about the episode = more people watching = higher ratings.

But from all the research I’ve done about sexual arousal, and reading through some of the interesting posts on these erogenous zones, I’m willing to take my own stab at where most wives like to be touched and stimulated.

1. Hands. Do you remember the spark you felt the first time you and your husband held hands? That cozy feeling of your softer hand in his rougher one, the way his fingers intertwined with yours, and how your palms seemed extra-sensitive to his touch? So what if a bunch of years have passed — touching hands is still sexy. I’m putting them in the erogenous zone category.

Because in addition to holding hands, he can gently stroke your palms, give you a hand massage, suck on your fingers. Those are all very sensual activities, and you might want to point out that your hands are one way to your heart. Or, to get his attention, you could always say they’re a great pit stop on the way to “seven.”

2. Lips. Our lips are quite sensitive. The skin of our lips have fewer cellular layers (3-5) than face skin (up to 16 layers), and many sensory receptors are concentrated there. Moreover, when you get close enough to kiss, you also get a whiff of your beloved’s pheromones, which can kick your desire into gear.

I’ve written about the importance of kissing several times, but here’s one post to get you thinking about this erogenous zone: You’re Not Kissing Enough

3. Neck. I’d like to provide scientific data on why touching and kissing the neck is so sexy. But honestly, this one is based on hearing from so many women that they like it. And frankly, it’s part of many book and movie romance scenes, and if this practice didn’t appeal to women, it wouldn’t be.

One theory is that the neck is both sensitive to touch, but also a rather private area. After all, whom do you let touch your neck? So exposing it to your beloved feels both vulnerable and arousing. Now some wives are too ticklish there, but plenty of gals enjoy a husband working his way up or down her neck with his lips.

4. Breasts. How you like them handled depends on you, but most wives enjoy being aroused through their breasts. You might enjoy your whole breast being held, massaged, or squeezed, or you might prefer total concentration on your nipples. Wives vary in sensitivity, so let your husband know what you enjoy.

It might change as stimulation increases, meaning you want him to start gently but desire greater pressure as you get more and more turned on. But very few women don’t enjoy something in this area. (Breastfeeding moms, you get a pass on this one if it bothers you right now.) Our breasts are pretty erogenous.

5. Vulva. Vulva is a catch-all term for the external female genitalia. It includes your vaginal lips (labia), clitoris, vaginal opening, and more. I’m going to remove clitoris from this list, because it deserves its own section. But the other parts are sensitive to varying degrees and can be aroused with manual or oral contact. In particular, the labia and vaginal opening are sensitive.

Your husband probably doesn’t understand that you’d like him to spend a little more time here, getting your engine revving and your juices flowing. It’s all so close to the part he really wants to be in that the vulva can get short shrift at times. Ask him to massage or lick your labia, tease your vaginal opening, and generally explore down there for what feels good.

6. Vagina. I suspect most husbands think this is Erogenous Zone #1. And it’s certainly in the running. When you’re highly aroused, having your husband penetrate your vagina is an incredibly satisfying feeling. Even before then, many wives enjoy digital penetration (his finger inside) to get them going.

God uniquely created vagina to receive your husband’s penis, and you can experience many amazing sensations there, using various positions and angles. He might even make contact with your Skene’s glands or G-spot. It’s a wonderfully erogenous area, and nothing feels quite like intercourse.

7. Clitoris. After some consideration, however, I decided this was “seven.” Because if you want to have an orgasm, you need direct or indirect stimulation of your clitoris. You can get indirect stimulation through intercourse, but intercourse isn’t guaranteed to produce that orgasm. Direct contact is an easier way to achieve climax.

But it has to be the right kind of stimulation. As Monica said, some guys hit the early zones, then “go to seven and set up camp.” Yet it’s unlikely to feel good if your husband kisses you a couple of times, then starts in on your clitoris. Stimulation there is going to feel much better when your lubrication is sufficient and your clitoris begins to swell. Guide your husband to give this erogenous zone the attention it desires and enjoys.

Are those really the seven erogenous zones?

No. They’re my suggestions. My online research proposed several other possibilities: scalp and hair, ears and ear lobes, stomach, buttocks, behind the knees, feet and toes.

Which should remind us that God created us differently. I give a lot of how-to tips here on my blog, but you have to try things out and see what gets you — and your husband — going. Your seven erogenous zones may not be the same seven erogenous zones as other women.

And, to confuse things even more, your seven erogenous zones could change! Because our bodies change throughout life. What felt good before you had kids might not feel as good after, or what felt good when your body was 25 years old might not feel the same when you’re 52 years old.

So here’s my advice: Treat your whole body as a potential erogenous zone. Yes, you’ll immediately be able to knock certain locations out of the running (“You want to kiss my armpit? I don’t think so!”), but you might be surprised to discover what turns you on.

Also, what turns your husband on. Maybe licking the skin behind his ear drives him utterly wild. Or he adores you squeezing his bum.

That’s the beauty of sex in marriage — you have time and a safe space to explore. Take your time and enjoy the discovery of all the erogenous zones you can find!