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Confessions of My Sexy and Sex-Happy Hubby

Spock

Actual expression from my husband (aka Spock) when I asked him to make 10 Confessions

Well, stop the presses and knock me over with a feather! After the 10 Confessions of Sex-Positive Spouses starting hitting the blogosphere (see my post), I asked my hubby if he wanted to play. He said YES!

So while I have been using my Mondays to answer reader questions, I am halting that train on its tracks to let this Little Engine that Could come on through. Today’s post is 8 Confessions of My Sexy and Sex-Happy Hubby. Since he’s not a big talker or writer, he could only come up with eight (two more and he would have been way past his word quota for the day) and I interviewed him. The bold statements are his, and the rest is my commentary.

1. Get her as hot as you feel. This was hubby’s first recommendation for husbands in the sexual arena. Not a bad one, eh?

2. Small things may not be a habit for you, but they will open her up to you. This is something my husband has learned in our many years of marriage: Doing little things throughout the day for your wife opens her heart up to you and makes her more willing to engage in physical intimacy. We talked about non-sexual touches, acts of service, and romantic gestures as examples of those “little things.” This isn’t a tit-for-tat plan, but rather a recognition that expressing love in little ways brings you two closer and sets the stage for sexual intimacy.

3. On the whole, sex gets better with age. You know each other better. You are more comfortable with both the safe areas and experimenting. More touches also mean that you are more attuned to your mate and have a better performance. This has been mentioned in other 10 Confessions lists, and it flies in the face of what a lot of media suggests–that the best experiences are the first ones of discovery or that you reach a point where sex is “old hat.” But I also find it to be true while our intimacy may not be as giddy as it was at the beginning, it is deeper, more arousing, and all around better.

4. Understanding God the Father, Jesus the Husband, and Church the Bride helps a husband understand how to cherish his wife. (Okay, I’m swooning a little over my hubby now.) Ephesians 5:25-27 says, “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless.” Indeed, husbands who do that with their wives are much more likely to enjoy a healthy marriage, including sexuality.

5. The “vaginal orifice” (I swear that was his phrase) is larger and more flexible than I thought. Um, okay. I queried him further, and Hubby’s take was that he was simply surprised by how the wife’s body was created in such a way that the opening appears small but adapts, conforms, and accommodates the husband’s manhood. I don’t know about you, ladies, but the very thought of putting a penis inside me when I was a young teenager was utterly horrifying! And it all turned out pretty good. So yeah, God’s design is awesome.

6. Sex is a sport. This was in response to Justin of Do Not Disturb who pointed out in his list: Sex is better than sports. When I read my husband that statement, he immediately replied, “Sex is a sport.” I think he wants an MVP designation now.

7. Sex is the most explicit physical rendering of the biblical expression, “The two will become one flesh.” Genesis 2:24 says, “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh.” There are others ways in which a married couple are one, as a household, with finances, as parents, and more. To have a healthy marriage, you must integrate your lives in such a way that whatever impacts one of you will impact both of you. This is a truly wonderful thing with sex! We are integrated physically, and what brings one of us pleasure should pleasure the other as well. I was a little surprised that my man didn’t immediately quote the next verse in Genesis 2: The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.” I don’t remember that one being on any memory verse lists.

8. One can initiate at any part of the body. Toe, belly button, back of the knee, back of the neck, middle of the vertebrae, anywhere. Pick a starting point! In fact, have a year where each day has a different starting point. I like this idea! The hubs just shook up his brain like a Yahtzee cup and this is what fell out! Husbands should take note here to vary their approach. Also, don’t start with the private parts! Wives typically respond better to being stimulated in other sensitive areas of their body first. The skin itself has approximately 50 touch receptors per square centimeter (from ThinkQuest.org), and touch receptors vary in their sensitivity. For instance, some respond to heat, others to pressure, and still others to simple touch. One of the beauties of a long marriage is taking your time to discover how each and every part of your spouse’s body responds to your touch. Start exploring, and see where you end up!

And that’s it. We’re out of statements from my hubby regarding sexuality. So how about you? What have you learned that has made you more positive about God’s gift of sexuality in marriage?

Must It Always Lead to Sex?

Male & female symbols intertwined

Photo credit: Microsoft Word Clip Art

We wives ask ourselves this very question at varied times.

After a long day when your shoulder muscles are tight, you ask your hubby to give you a quick massage. He starts rubbing your shoulders, your head falls forward as you “ooh” and “aah” at his firm but gentle touch, and stress begins to ebb from your body . . . until his hands move forward over your shoulders and begin to touch your breasts instead. Next thing you know, the relaxing massage for you has become a titillating experience for him and he’s ready and eager to get to the bedroom and massage other parts.

OR

As he comes home, you greet your husband at the door with a fond embrace and a soft-lipped kiss — either because you enjoy his presence or you’re thrilled to have reinforcements to handle the rambunctious spawn tearing up your house little by little. The peck was so nice that you extend the kissing with another, deeper, more passionate kiss. Happy to have had your Hollywood movie moment, you’re ready to get back to dinner preparations or lock yourself away in your bathroom in a hot bubbly tub. But he has read your cue as “She wants me” and suggests a sexual encounter.

I could give plenty of other examples, but these two will suffice. The point is that wives often feel that any show of affection is immediately interpreted by their husbands as a come-on or a sign of sexual readiness.

Husbands, take note of the two very important rules that follow.

Affection does not lead to sex. Not always. Most women enjoy affection for its own sake. Holding her hand or hugging your wife may make her feel secure not sensual. Kissing her evokes romantic, not necessarily sexual, feelings. We like to sit close, cuddle, stroke our lover’s skin, and get massages without the pressure of sexual performance automatically tied to the affection. Most women are more generous with touching and kissing when they feel that it can be enjoyed as its own separate pleasure.

Remember when you were dating? Unless your relationship began with a one-night stand (which I hope it did not, but I don’t exclude the possibility), you moved slowly from small touches to grander gestures of affection. Perhaps you recall the first time you held one another’s hand or your first kiss — including where you were, what you wore, or what music played in the background. You didn’t expect to “get lucky” the first time you touched.

Guess what? You won’t get lucky every time you touch just because you’re married now. While sex is a fabulous experience, you should also enjoy the small gestures of affection that create a romantic atmosphere, communicate tenderness and like for one another, and foster closeness and emotional security in the marriage.

Affection does lead to sex. Wait, this is the exact opposite. Yes and no. The paradox is that when husbands show affection without strings attached and when intimate gestures become routine and enjoyed for their own sake, it creates the environment in which sexual encounters are more likely to occur.

Foreplay for women is not merely the 10 to 15 minutes before intercourse; it’s what has happened in the last 24 to 72 hours. When a wife feels secure and loved for herself, when she can get a stress-reducing massage that lasts longer than three minutes and doesn’t involved a breast-squeeze, she feels connected to her husband and more willing engage sexually with him. Those minor touches and brushes of skin against skin, those tender kisses stolen in the kitchen or the utility room as you work together — they lay the groundwork for the wife to open up with her husband later in the bedroom.

Thus, affection does lead to sex. Just not always right away. It may take fifty minor acts of affection for the wife to equal the kind of sexual interest a husband might have after two seconds of “naked woman emerges from shower.” A wise husband will take time to demonstrate genuine desire for his wife — not simply for her body, but for her — with or without sex in that immediate moment.

I realize, of course, that there are exceptions — wives who want oodles of affection and still won’t put out a welcome sign no matter what. They likely have underlying issues which I and other marriage bloggers address in different posts.

But on the whole, courting your wife with affection for its own sake is a smart move, hubbies. You might also discover that you relish kissing her soft, pink lips and holding her curvy body close to yours, just because.

Greet one another with a kiss of love.”

1 Peter 5:14

Touch Me: I’m Here

It’s funny (peculiar, not ha-ha) how often being available or being present makes a positive difference to someone.

After you race through a store and select items, someone must be available at the check-out counter to ring up your purchases, and stores that do well in being there at the right time and in the right way keep you coming back.

When you phone a company for assistance, do you enjoy spending twenty minutes talking to a robotic voice and pushing buttons to get to the right department? Or does it make a difference when a friendly person answers the phone?

From your young child saying, “Mom, look!” right before demonstrating a pirouette to a teenager needing you to hold her as she cries after her first break-up, being there makes a difference.

We expect teachers at school to be available to our children when they have questions. We expect the postal service to be there at our mailboxes to deliver letters and packages. We expect the television show we anticipate throughout the week to be there when we turn it on.

Day in and day out, it makes a difference to be there. Woody Allen famously said that “eighty percent of success is showing up.” Allen’s not my go-to guy for advice, but this quote is pretty good.

When people are not there and we need them — why is our favorite show always the one preempted? — we are understandably disappointed.

I’ve been talking about reasons why spouses sometimes are not available for sexual intimacy with their spouse. In fact, there are times when the very thought of your beloved touching you makes you cringe. You do not want to engage in sex, foreplay, affection, and possibly even eye contact with this person.

Perhaps you are so tired that you can’t prop your eyes open or move your limbs: Don’t Touch Me: I’m Exhausted!

Or you’re particularly frustrated with your spouse: Don’t Touch Me: I’m Angry!

Maybe you have way too much to do to add physical intimacy to the list: Don’t Touch Me: I’m Busy!

And some of you don’t want to show up sexually because you have to get naked and you don’t feel good about your appearance: Don’t Touch Me: I’m Ugly!

But if it’s important for the barista at the Starbucks Drive-Through to be there when you need a venti cup of coffee to make it through your day, how much more important is it to be there when our spouse needs a small cup ‘o lovin’?

(Okay, c’mon. One of you out there is thinking it! I know, I know: “I’ll take my cup o’ lovin’ with whipped cream, please.” Whew. Got that out of the way.)

My prior posts addressed tackling some ongoing, nagging obstacles to being present sexually in our marriage. Of course, there are bigger issues for plenty of couples out there (e.g., sexual history, pornography), but a lot of marriages could improve their sexual health by clearing out the excuse bin and putting sexual intimacy near the top of the to-do pile.

Couple face-to-face

Photo credit: Microsoft Word Clip Art

Deal with anger, exhaustion, busyness, and body image issues so that you can turn to your sweetheart tonight or tomorrow night or sometime very soon and say, “Touch me, I’m here.”

I’m asking readers to share their own advice below. What daily distractions or issues have you overcome to make sexual intimacy a priority in your marriage? How important has it been to you to have your spouse emotionally and physically available to you? How do you think we can foster that sense of true presence with our spouses and still work our jobs, feed the kids, and do the laundry? What thoughts do you want to add to the Don’t Touch Me ideas I’ve shared?

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Sleeping with the Enemy?

Laura & Rob Petrie from The Dick Van Dyke Show

Laura & Rob Petrie

Recently, a reader recommended The Dick van Dyke Show as a positive television show which “illustrates respect and love in marriage.” I enjoyed that series and its family values, but the comment got me to thinking about that era of film and television. Married couples were shown sleeping separately in twin beds. Respectful perhaps, but not the show of intimate lovin’ we typically expect from the wedded.

I have also read quite a few books written at times in history when an affluent husband and wife had separate rooms — his and hers chambers.

Pre-marriage, these arrangements struck me as preposterous. Who wouldn’t want to sleep every night in the welcoming arms of their beloved?

Yet anyone who’s been married for a while knows that there are moments when kicking your otherwise-delightful spouse out of the sleep nest is an attractive proposition. Perhaps he is always hot while she’s continuously cold, or she needs a fan running while he eschews air blowing onto his side. It’s not always easy to share your snooze space with another human being night after night, especially when their sleep habits don’t exactly match yours.

Perhaps you can relate to the descriptions below. See if you or your spouse make an appearance here.

The Thief. A Thief takes something that doesn’t belong to them – as in sheets, covers, pillows, etc. If you are married to a Thief, you wake up in the middle of the night to find yourself lying on a bare mattress with all your covering and cushions wrapped tightly around your bedmate. The Bible says that thieves should repay more than they took. Thus, the best way to deal with a Thief might be to roll over, yank as hard as possible, and wrap those covers around yourself instead. It’s not revenge; it’s recompense.

The Mover and Shaker. Whether twitching, tossing and turning, or flip-flopping all night long, this person cannot keep still. Apparently, no one informed her that sleeping was a largely inert activity. Sleeping with a spouse who moves and shakes all night long can make the bed feel more like a trampoline. And who can sleep through a series of seat drops and somersaults?

The Noisemaker. Ranging from heavy breathing to gurgling to buzzsaw snoring, the racket of the Noisemaker rattles your nerves and sometimes the rafters. When first married, you attempt sweetly tapping your spouse and informing him that he is snoring and should roll over. Several years in, you’re reduced to pinching his nose, shoving him, and contemplating how long you would need to hold the pillow to smother the snores but not the breathing.

The Stockpiler. This spouse treats the bed like her own work or play space, bringing in every conceivable item that might be needed as she works, reads, grooms, eats, plays, etc. This may include a laptop and piles of paper for work; nail tools, polishes, lotions, and more for a pedicure; a stash of dishes, cups, food, and drinks for snack time; or even the family pet collection of three dogs and four cats. Whatever your Stockpiler has managed to bring to the bed, there isn’t much room left for you to slip in and get some sleep, not to mention that a mass of the dog hairs and crumbs don’t invite visions of wild lovemaking in that space.

The Grabber. Primarily a male category, the Grabber reaches over to his spouse at any time of night to touch, grasp, pinch, or squeeze whichever body part seems particularly appealing at the moment. This can mean that you are delightfully snoozing and are suddenly greeted at 2:00 in the morning with a honk of your breast. Does the Grabber actually believe this will result in the kind of invitation he desires? At the very least, the Grabber may wish to ease into it through light touches, strokes, kisses, and whispers of love before clamping down on the goodies.

The Brainstormer. Of course, no one is opposed to brainstorming, but a Brainstormer here is the person whose flashes of brilliance occur at the very hours that you are attempting to hang onto sanity with a dab of sleep. The Brainstormer awakens at 3:00 a.m. with a list of to-dos, a headful of worries, a great idea for a new ministry or work project, or a need to talk something out at length . . . with you. It seems that your spouse cannot process through the honey-do list or emotional conversation during waking hours, but Einsteinian ideas or Freudian feelings rear their head at the very moment that your own head is fogged up with notions of sleep, blessed sleep.

The Sprawler. The Sprawler stretches out on the bed at odd geometrical angles, managing to consume the majority of bed space. Little by little, you find yourself edged into a sliver of inches in which to sleep. You wonder if perhaps your spouse is really that elastic guy from the Fantastic Four because you didn’t remember his limbs being that long and invasive. Your only hope is to learn to sleep in the fetal position, with your chin tucked to your knees and possibly even sucking your thumb.

The Silent Killer. I suppose the flatulent could also be named under the Noisemaker category, but nothing is worse than those silent-but-deadly ones that your beloved can render at times. There you lie, trying to enter dreamland after a long day, and all of a sudden your nostrils are viciously attacked by an odor that cannot be described (or at least I refuse to describe it here). Had there been noise, there might have been adequate warning. But in this case, all you can hope for is that moving to your edge of the bed, fanning the sheets, and turning on the ceiling fan will dissipate the smell. Unfortunately, however, not the memory.

I won’t admit to which one I am or which one my spouse is. But I will say that it isn’t always like sleeping with the enemy. Most of the time, it’s a beautiful thing to share your bed with your spouse. Like other parts of marriage, it involves give and take, live and learn, joke and laugh. In fact, I want to add one more category which describes both me and my husband:

The Cuddler. The Cuddler spends some of that time in bed, before and/or while asleep, getting cozy with her spouse. She enjoys touching, holding, snuggling, and spooning as affectionate expressions of love and intimacy. The Cuddler might notice when her spouse has left the bed to use the bathroom, get a snack, or for a bout of insomnia because she misses his body lying next to her. Now that’s nice.

What are the best and worst things about sharing sleep space with your spouse? Do you have your own category to add?

Slap-worthy Practices in Marriage…and Better Options

From time to time — in personal conversation, through my blog, or on Twitter — I hear of spouses who are completely blowing it in the area of marital intimacy. I’m not talking about the spouse whose approach or skills could use tweaking. I’m talking about that selfish husband or wife whose actions are destroying the feelings of the other when it comes to bedroom relations.

"Slapsgiving" scene of How I Met Your Mother

“Slapsgiving” – How I Met Your Mother

And while I generally subscribe to non-violence, some of you, to be honest, I want to slap. Seeing that I can’t actually reach my hand through the Internet, find your face, and deliver a personal wake-up call — not to mention that I really am not that kind of person — I’m merely going to describe some types who are not helping their sex lives.

Pound Counters. Those of you keenly aware that your wife weighs 17 pounds more post-childbirth than when she was leading an aerobics class back in the day and remind her often, stop it. (And all of you whose wives weigh 50 pounds more than they used to, but you knew she had never done a sit-up in her life.) As long as you nag her about her weight, she is very unlikely to feel worth the effort to exercise, dress up, and strut into the bedroom for intimate times. Honestly, what beauty contestant would sleep with the judge who gave her the lowest score? I know this happens with wives judging men as well, but I hear more often from wives feeling that they aren’t pretty enough. And being told that they aren’t pretty enough.

What can you do instead? Tell her she’s beautiful to you, over and over. Find something to compliment — even it’s her eyes. Take her shopping for attractive clothing or lingerie. When you have built up her confidence and remembered why you thought she was so hot to begin with, you can suggest exercising or taking a healthy cooking class together for your mutual health.

Barterers. A barterer is that person who conveys something like: If you build a shed in the backyard, watch the children for two hours, go quilt shopping with me, and give me a 30-minute back rub, I suppose I will open my legs a few inches so you can have sex with me. Really? You are making it clear that you do not want to engage in physical intimacy with your spouse and will only do so if he kowtows to your demands. You are putting yourself in the princess throne and expecting your subject to slay the dragon, save the villagers, and bring you the golden crown before you’ll acquiesce to his request to spend time with you.

God intended sex to be a mutually intimate act. That means that you need to willingly engage in sexual intimacy with your spouse, without all the strings that make your honey feel more like a marionette than a treasured partner.

Porn Junkies. Be assured: Not all men look at porn, no matter how much you tell yourself otherwise. There are plenty of men whose view of naked females includes only their wife and their infant daughter during diaper changes. Fess up to what you are really doing — paying women to titillate you. Porn models and actresses are compensated to pose and portray; they love the dollars in your pocket. Your wife is not paid to be intimate with you; she loves you.

Engaging in pornography imprints a perspective of sex that damages your marital relationship. Physical intimacy is not supposed to occur in quick bursts of increasing arousal in which there is no relational connection between the parties. That is the antithesis of what God provided.

Moreover, a husband engaging with porn negatively affects his wife. When you look at these images and make sex about your private arousal, you communicate that she cannot turn you on and isn’t worth the time to try. Many women experience terrible body image issues because their husband is always looking at gorgeous naked women instead. They feel they can’t compete and often lose interest in trying. Which becomes a vicious cycle because the husband may view more pornography when his marital sex life is lacking.

Sex Withholders. If you withhold sex every time that you feel the slightest bit tired, unnerved, miffed, not-in-the-mood, or just “off,” you make it impossible to have a quality sex life in your marriage. If you can count the number of times you’ve had sex in the last six months on one hand, that is a big problem. If you are waiting for ideal conditions to engage in intimacy with your spouse, you are causing both of you to miss out on God’s design for your marriage.

Unfortunately, one of the common themes Christian sex bloggers see is from husbands wondering how to convince their wives that once a month or so isn’t enough or how to get them to enjoy sex with them. Ladies, the truth is that if you rarely have sex, it probably won’t feel good because you need some built-up elasticity for your body to respond favorably; otherwise, it’s like taking a high-energy aerobics class every six months and wondering why you’re sore after every time.

If you don’t enjoy sex or have problems in your marital relationship that are causing you to withhold, address them! Talk to your doctor. Talk to a counselor. Talk to your pastor. (See my Pain & Pleasure post on pain in intercourse, if you’ve having that problem.) But stop wondering why your hubby’s tongue is hanging out at you every time you undress; he’s like a dog who hasn’t had a drink in days, so no wonder he’s panting.

I don’t really want to slap any of you. Of course not! I pray for the marriages of my readers.

I do, however, want to convince you to follow the Golden Rule. It’s a great way to approach life: “Do to others as you would have them do to you” (Matthew 7:12).

Think about how your choices impact your spouse. Do you communicate genuine love for them? Are your choices selfish and rationalized? Do you need a wake-up call? Or will you wake yourself up and start loving the person you are committed to with the respect and care we all desire?