29 Days to Great Sex Day 22: How Often is Enough?

How Often Should a Married Couple Make Love? Some thoughts.
We’re in the home stretch of our 29 Days to Great Sex, leading up to the release of The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex (available now!). Over the last few days I’ve been looking at some of the more contentious issues: how do you decide what’s okay to do in bed? And what do you do if one of you is more adventurous than the other?

Today I want to turn to another issue of contention: How often should a married couple make love?

Let me tell you about my journey when I was writing The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex. I conducted two surveys of over 1000 women each, looking into all kinds of questions, including how much they enjoyed sex, how often they had sex, and how sex had improved since they got married. I was only planning on interviewing women, but I wanted to know: how often do married couples make love?

But then I started to analyze the results, and they really worried me. Most of it was stuff that I had expected. What floored me was that 40% of women reported making love less than once a week.

So I decided that I had better survey some guys, too, to find out how they felt about this. And the results weren’t pretty.

You’re going to have to buy the book to learn what they were–I’ve got it divided into age group, and religion, and years married, and everything–but suffice it to say that there are a lot of rather miserable men. Many women are quite miserable, too, since about 25% of women reported that their husbands rarely wanted to make love, which made them feel very undesirable. After this series is over, I’m going to talk more to those women about what they can do.

For today I want to talk to you women who just find sex a chore. And so here’s a video I prepared just for you. It’s not that long, and it’s pretty funny (and helpful):

 

Sex connects us on three levels: physical, spiritual, and emotional. We’ve dealt with the physical. We’ll talk more about the spiritual in a few days. But it’s the emotional that I’m concerned with today, because making love tells a spouse: I value you. I love you. I desire you. I accept you. When you don’t make love, it’s as if you’re saying the opposite. That may not seem fair, because you may think: why does everything have to do with sex? Why can’t he just love me for who I am? But men were created to feel affirmation through sex. When we don’t want them, they feel as if they aren’t loved, either, even if that’s not what we intend.

I truly do not believe that we women understand how devastating it is to men to be constantly turned down by their wives. Over and over again, I heard men say, “I get rejected so often that I’ve just stopped asking. It’s humiliating.” (and if you’re the one who’s feeling that way because your husband isn’t interested, stay tuned, because I’ll have a series for you in March! Though reading these posts together with him would likely be helpful even now).

If you feel like he demands sex too much, you can get mad at him and say that he should just grow up and not need it so much, but then you’re imposing your views on him. You’re asking him to change, but you’re not willing to change. And you know something, girls? Like I said in the video, it really doesn’t take much. Just decide to jump in! It doesn’t have to take two hours. It likely will only take 15 or 20 minutes. And if you put your mind to it, your body will likely follow.

So how much sex is enough in marriage? I would say at least twice a week, if I were forced to pick a number. But for some couples, especially when they’re younger, more would probably be good. :) And the happiest couples I found were those who were making love 3-4 times a week. When you connect like that, it has repercussions on how you feel about each other.

Maybe we should stop asking how often should we make love, because that sounds more like “what’s the minimum amount of sex I can get away with?”, and start asking, “how can I get in the right frame of mind so I can show my husband how much I love him?“. Make the second into a habit, and I guarantee your marriage will get better!

If you’re still struggling with this, then The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex was written just for you! There’s a whole chapter on the benefits of increasing the frequency of sex, without laying guilt on you. And it’s pretty funny, too! It’s got stories of chocolate truffles, weight loss dares, sex flowers, and more!

Great Sex Challenge 22: Don’t think about it. Don’t overanalyze it. Don’t wonder if you’re going to enjoy it tonight, or going to orgasm tonight, or going to get enough sleep tonight. Just do it! Ready? 1-2-3 Go!

Sheila is the author of The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex.

31 Days to Great Sex

New! This 29 Days to Great Sex series has been turned into an ebook, the 31 Days to Great Sex (only $4.99!)

It's expanded, it's written for couples (not just women), and it's easy to use! 31 Days to boost your emotional intimacy, spiritual intimacy, and physical intimacy. You'll talk, flirt, and explore! Ignite your marriage here.



29 Days to Great Sex:
Day 1: The Act of Marriage
Day 2: Starting Fresh
Day 3: Loving the Skin You’re In
Day 4: Pucker Up!
Day 5: Reawaken Desire
Day 6: Why Your Hubby Wants You!
Day 7: Moving in the Right Direction
Day 8: 14 Ways to Play as a Couple
Day 9: Prepare for Sex throughout the Day
Day 10:16 Ways to Flirt with Your Husband
Day 11: How to Find Your Hubby Attractive
Day 12: If you’re Having a Hard Time with these Challenges
Day 13: Getting Your Head in the Game
Day 14: What if You’re Not “In the Mood”?
Day 15: What is Foreplay?
Day 16: How to Orgasm
Day 17: The Pleasure Center
Day 18: Foreplay Can Be for Him, Too!
Day 19: How to Come Alive Again
Day 20: Deciding on Boundaries
Day 21: 5 Ways to Spice Things Up

Next:
Day 23: Quickies are Great!
Day 24: Initiate, Baby!
Day 25: Sex When You Have Kids
Day 26: Rebuilding Your Sex Life
Day 27: Experiencing Spiritual Intimacy when You Make Love
Day 28: Overcoming Selfishness
Day 29: A Contest & a Party!

This would be a great post to share on Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook, or Tumblr! Please hit a share button below to let other couples learn about this series and have their marriages thrive!

The Good Girl's Guide to Great Sex

Marriage isn't supposed to be blah!


Sex is supposed to be stupendous--physically, emotionally, AND spiritually. If it's not, get The Good Girl's Guide to Great Sex--and find out what you've been missing.

Comments

  1. I have noticed that there is a pattern. The more stressed, busy, feeling distance between us there is, the less we connect physically. The less all of those things are happening, the more we connect physically. It’s hard to tell which causes which.
    Megan Elzey recently posted…So easy cheesy chicken enchiladasMy Profile

  2. I am so pleased that you took this approach. All too often, I read marriage experts who say that the right frequency is whatever you both agree to. Which means that if a couple decides to have sex once a quarter, that’s supposed to be okay.

    I disagree. I think twice a week or more is great. However, I definitely think that from the women’s perspective, you should engage about once a week or more. If you wait too long in between intercourse, your muscles do not adapt and you can feel sore post-coitus. Then you start thinking that you don’t like sex because it always makes you sore, so you want to have it less, which means it hurts more, so you want to have it less . . .

    Indeed, there are physical, emotional, and spiritual benefits to having frequent intimacy in marriage. Thanks for covering this, Sheila.
    J (Hot, Holy & Humorous) recently posted…Soul Mate or Sole Mate?My Profile

  3. We always get asked how often people should connect as well and we hate answering it!

    I agree that asking what is the minimum is such a flimsy statement that shows more of the heart issue than probably intended. When a couple truly understand the emotional, mental, spiritual and physical blessings God has attached to physical intimacy they won’t want to miss out on it. Keep this message going strong Sheila!
    donotdisturb blog recently posted…Sex Drives: Libido SaboteursMy Profile

  4. I read recently that when men don’t get it often enough, it is like they are hungry and roaming the kitchen for food. We need to keep our husbands happy at home and most men like to have it quite frequently, even older men!;)
    Lori recently posted…Lost Art Of HomemakingMy Profile

    • Very true, but I think we assume it’s simply a physical urge for them, when it’s also an emotional one, since that’s how they often experience love. So it is important!

      • For me, it’s actually much more of an emotional connection than it is a physical one. And this is coming from someone who, within the 5 love languages, my highest scoring love language is physical.

  5. So, what about when the hubby wants it daily? I always thought that was too much, but he insists it’s quite normal for him. We are not ‘young’ anymore and are not newlyweds.
    Heather recently posted…Valentine TreatsMy Profile

    • I think many men DO want it daily, but I also don’t think that’s realistic for most couples. But I’ve also found that when you increase the frequency and increase the passion, so that you’re enthusiastic about it, then going a day or two or three without sex isn’t a big deal for most men. When you’re enthusiastic, and when you initiate sometimes, he feels ten feet tall. Often when men don’t feel as if their wives truly desire it, then men start desiring it more in order to “prove” to themselves that their wives love them. It’s a vicious circle (as we talked about in another comment). So when you become enthusiastic and you initiate, he feels far less insecure, and it’s not usually as much of a problem. Does he still want to everyday? Sure. But it’s unlikely to be as much of a sore spot. Those, of course, are generalizations, but that’s what we’ve found to be true. It may not be in your case. But I’d just suggest, instead of saying, “I’ll never want it as much as him or be enough for him”, that you do jump in as often as is realistic for you, initiate sometimes, and make it fun. And then just see if, over time, it becomes less of an issue, even if you’re not making love everyday.

    • My DH normally wants sex 2x/day… he always has. Realistically, that just doesn’t happen! For me, I would ideally have sex 1-2x/week. Pretty big difference there. For us it’s been a sanctifying experience as we learn to value the other person’s wishes and desires above our own. That means that I have more sex than I would maybe naturally want to have, and my husband has less than he would naturally want to have. We both look at sex as an opportunity to “die to self” and serve the other person when we don’t really want to do that.

    • Many people in the 21st century have a sleep debt. After adjusting schedules and getting extra needed sleep, their bodies can readjust to a schedule where they are still getting more sleep than they’d been getting when they were in sleep debt. (according to an article I read recently). Is it possible that some people have a sex or intimacy debt and adjusting the schedule to make upfor the debt may rresult in being able to adjust to 1x /day instead of 2x or 5x / week instead of daily!

  6. Oops, forgot to hit the comment button
    Heather recently posted…Valentine TreatsMy Profile

  7. Well, I finally got myself to the health food store to get some coconut oil ;-)

    I’m totally loving the series, and so does my husband. I’m thinking about sex all the time ;-))))

    We try to not go without sex for more than 3 days. We noticed how easy it is to let life get in the way and than suddenly a week (!) has gone by without any. What helps me is not to wait until bedtime. My little girls watch too much TV for very good reasons. Dora the Explorer gives you 22 minutes!!! Those DVD’s are great for our intimate time together and can be used any time of day. I have no idea how things will go when they are teenagers but for now this is perfect for us.

    • I missed the post or comment about coconut oil, is it for massage or?
      Thanks! I always have some on hand for cooking.

      • It’s pretty much good for anything you want lt for. ;) It’s great for massage, lube, even oral ’cause it doesn’t really have a taste.

        • Love the c/o! The pharmacy grade has a stronger coconut smell to me than the food grade version. I like the pharmacy/extra virgin c/o. I use it for my dry skin in the winter time as well as for our lovemaking. Will never go back to chemical lubes again.

  8. At an Intimate Issues conference several years ago, Linda Dillow encouraged us to replace thinking of all the reasons “why tonight isn’t a good night to have sex” with thinking of all the reasons “why tonight IS a good night to have sex”!

    Approaching EVERY night as really great night to have sex was a huge paradigm shift for me. And I’ve certainly let my mind wander back to the old minimalistic thinking far too much.

    This month, since we’ve been reading your blog together every day, it’s been a great time to switch back to “EVERY night is a great night” thinking. We’ve been winding down by 8:30 or 9:00 PM so that we have time and energy to end the day together.
    Cheri Gregory recently posted…{Marriage Monday} Submission vs. ?My Profile

  9. I watched your video and was pleased with it. You’re pretty animate.

  10. Actually, it really bothers me that you say “I truly do not believe that we women understand how devastating it is to men to be constantly turned down by their wives. Over and over again, I heard men say, ‘I get rejected so often that I’ve just stopped asking. It’s humiliating.'” This is how EITHER spouse feels when they are turned down again and again. I know, I know, you said you’d address those women who want it more than their husbands later, but I’ve been reading the blog for awhile and I haven’t seen anything that is actually helpful in my situation (yes, I’m one of /those/ women who want it more than he does). I don’t know, I just wish that the issue wasn’t seen in terms of “husbands always want it and wives think it’s gross” and more “sometimes libidos aren’t matched, whether you’re a man or a woman.” It really makes us women who “want it” feel like freaks. Just FYI.

    • I’m sorry, Sara, and it truly is coming! It will be after this 29 Days is over. Like I said, I started this series to talk about the big obstacles that many women have when they don’t feel particularly enthusiastic about sex. And there are a lot of issues with that! But just stay tuned for the first week of March, because I truly will deal with the other side then. But it’s hard to deal with them both because they’re very different issues.

      Also, in my book I have a chapter on what to do when you’ve got your problem, when it’s the other way around. And so I do know it happens, but I just can only deal with one thing at a time.

      • One more thing, and I guess this explains why I focus so much on this area: the one thing you can change is yourself. You can’t change another person. So that’s why I say so much to women who aren’t interested in sex, because they can actually do something about that.

        When it’s the guy who isn’t interested, there really isn’t as much that you can do. That’s the horrible truth. There are some strategies that I’d like to share with people, and some warnings, as well as times when you made need another person’s help to intervene, if it’s extreme. But the simple fact is that you cannot change another; you can only change how you react to them. So the easier problem to solve, from a woman’s standpoint, is when SHE isn’t as interested. Solving the problem when HE isn’t as interested is not nearly as simple. I hope what I will say will be helpful, but I do think that women whose husbands aren’t interested are in a more difficult position, because there aren’t as many strategies that they can take to make things better. They’re more limited in what they can do. The good news is that this turns you more to God. The bad news is that a way out is just a little more difficult.

        • From my months hanging out on The Marriage Bed forums, it seems that low-drive guys fall into two huge categories, honestly. 1) porn addicts and 2) those with low testosterone. There’s a third category of guys with control issues, with performance anxiety or who are withholding to punish for some perceived slight or resentment, but they seem fairly rare.

          Of the two main causes, #1 requires serious work to root out, and is no fun for a wife to confront. But the body and mind CAN be reprogrammed. #2 is hard to get most men who have it to care about (as one of the symptoms of low T is general malaise) but the medical solutions are fairly open-and-shut. Men don’t have sex wired to the emotions as much as women do (it’s been said that women need a reason to have sex, while men only need a place), which actually makes the solutions a bit tougher when the expected drive just isn’t there.

          • Very true, David. I think the #3 reason would be relationship issues: stress, past sexual problems, past affairs, and that just combines to make men feel insecure. And if you’re insecure and afraid that it won’t work, you may run away from it. Closely tied with #2 is also diabetes/health issues. Many health problems lower testosterone and thus lower sex drive, including being overweight and having diabetes. Often just getting that under control can make a tremendous difference. But many men who do have low testosterone don’t really care about it, and that’s the problem: how do you get him to get help? We’ll talk about that soon!

          • My hubby doesn’t have a huge sex drive but he is also a life-long diabetic- that really affects things down there- and it’s not his fault he has been on insulin since he was a child.

        • I should add that for women, it seems, the major work is an attitude adjustment. Most guys who aren’t generous in the bedroom can adjust their attitudes all day long, and that won’t necessarily produce anything, particularly if porn use is ongoing or the T levels are that of an 80-year-old.

          • Sheila or David- What do you suggest an ex-porn addict do to up his drive? He was addicted for years and has said that is done with and I believe him, but the drive still isn’t there…

    • I am with you Sara and I completely understand how you are feeling. My husband doesn’t have a very good drive and I want it often. But when I try to talk to him about it, it just makes him feel demasculinated because he can’t get ‘in the mood’ as often as is normal. He has back pain issues and so takes pain medications which I know are a huge cause of this. However, it just leaves me feeling lonely and insecure, not feeling like I arouse him enough. Its soooo frustrating to feel that way but I also don’t want to ever make him feel like less than a man for not meeting my needs. I try to instead go the extra mile to flirt with him, dress up for him, show him some skin…anything I can do to help him get in the mood…not much helps. So now what???

      • Abbie, that’s really rough. Can you talk to the doctor about switching pain meds? I wonder if there may be some that don’t decrease testosterone. Or perhaps talk to a physician about alternative therapies for back pain? Or testosterone along with the pain meds? In a way, medical roots to low sex drive in men are the easiest to fix, and it may be a great relief to him to have a sex drive, too. I know it’s hard to talk to physicians about it, but doctors really are used to it, and they do want to help. I’d give that a try!

  11. In my case, my husband and I both work full time outside of the home. He works second shift and I work third shift. Since he went on second shift last month the frequency of our love making has decreased immensely as it’s too hard to find time to be together. In the mornings, I’m tired and want to go to bed because I have to get up by 5pm to care for our 7yr old son. In the early evening, he’s not here. When he gets home around midnight during the week, I’m not home. So, that leaves weekends.

    • That is so difficult, Kelly! I know that’s what so many couples have to do when jobs are scarce, but I guess I’d just say hang in there, take advantage of the time you do have, and look for other jobs so you can be together more!

  12. I have changed my mindset over the last few months to try to provide more to my husband. I want him happy and I have to say I want happy too!!

    So after making love more often I must admit I want it just as much as him. We have sex almost daily. We are 30ish, We have 3 kids, he works full time and goes to school part time, I homeschool and work evenings from home… We are active in our Church and Homeschool Group. I must say I ACTUALLY FEEL BETTER!!! LMBO!!!!!!!!! I don’t understand it however I don’t have to it just helps me by making love to my husband more!!

    So moral of story — TRY TO MAKE LOVE EVEN WHEN YOU DONT WANT TO OR YOUR TIRED… Its worth the results!!
    Kayla Arrowood recently posted…Earth Worm Study – CompleteMy Profile

    • Awesome, Kayla! It’s like that circle that I talk about in the book–when you start making love more, all kinds of other benefits come, too! (And yes, for women, libido is often a use it or lose it phenomenon. When we use it more, we get it more!)

  13. When we were younger, it was a bigger problem, as I was tired with being a new mom and he was more at his peak sexually, and wasn’t getting enough. As we’ve gotten older, it’s balanced out. We have sex at least once a week. But it’s hard during the week, as he has had to adjust to 3rd shift again and is only up for about 1 1/2 hours (and is usually tired) before he goes to work. I’ve been actually wanting it more lately, so look forward to Fridays or Saturdays (and I want to try your suggestion that you sent me!) I’m hoping he gets adjusted eventually, so that he can be awake a little earlier during the week, both for me and for the kids.

  14. i’m really looking forward to the posts after this series as i’m a wife whose husband has very little interest in sex. thanks for reminding me that i can only change myself and for acknowledging that there really aren’t any easy solutions for wives in my situation.

  15. Unfortunately the people who really need to be reading this series are the ones who will not. I recommended this site to one lady in our church, married to someone who is no longer a believer. Her comment, when I asked her about a week later how she had gotten on with it (in 2011, not for this series) was, “Oh, I couldn’t keep going on to that site. It’s a bit racy!” Yet she was saying that she felt that her connnection with her husband was intermittent.

  16. I am so glad there are other “freaks”like me out there. I have a higher drive then hubby and it can be really frustrating. He was listening to the video today and started laughing cause when I start initiating it and wanting it more he tells me to go take care of it in the shower. I have often been hurt when he doesn’t want it and think there is something wrong with me. I have asked him to get his testosterone checked, but he just laughs and calls me his little nympho. But I have been reading the 29 days and it has brought about amazing conversation and has been positive, Thanks Sheila, keep up the good work.

  17. It’s so interesting that there are a lot of wives speaking up about their higher drives here! The reasons listed above might be the main ones, but I think 2) lower testosterone/health issues can carry a lot of different meanings. If our husbands are working so much that their stress levels are high, this will affect their health and probably their hormones. My husband is a wonderful teacher at a junior high, and he has a really hard time leaving his job at the door of the school. He also has a second teaching job right now, and between the long hours and the type of work he does he is so exhausted. We are working on ways to lower his stress level and his work load so that we have more time together, and just the communication about this topic has helped so much. We feel closer already, and more intimate, because of the talking. It isn’t always easy to be frank about this issue, but doing my best to be, and drawing him out in conversation, has helped a lot!
    lmz recently posted…13 FebruaryMy Profile

    • Definitely! And I’d say the other thing is just the economy. When the economy is lousy, and men are stressed about providing, it’s going to affect their sex drive. Men’s sex drives are really tied into their perceived masculinity. If they feel as if they’re not “being a man” in some area, that can affect their sex drive. So if they’re afraid they can’t provide, or if they’re afraid that they’re not being a good enough dad/husband, then they’re going to not desire sex as much. It almost becomes a vicious circle. Which is why anything that we women can do to show our men that we appreciate them as men can go a long way!

  18. Minimum every other day, or 3.5 times a week. Kevin Lehman in “Sheet Music” goes so far as to say, don’t bother getting married, if you are not willing make this a serious goal.

    If it hurts, then explore ways around it. Lubrication, oral, different positions, etc… but if you slow down the frequency beyond a certain minimum your body will start to want less, and it is self-fulfilling. It’s like exercise, if you don’t do it enough your body gives up, and decides it doesn’t really need the muscle.

    Once we set this as a goal and set out to do it, a surprising thing happened – our libidos synced up, and at a higher rate than we expected. Now we’re are 7-8x a week, and neither of us feel deprived.

  19. Stephanie says:

    So, what do you do when your husband leaves for work by 4 am M-F and is ready for bed by 7 pm? There are many times that I make the time for his needs after work but it is difficult to get out of “mommy mode” when I can hear the children and I am wondering if everything is ok and will they hear us and how late will supper be because I stopped to do this and on and on. I feel like I do pretty good at keeping this a priority in our marriage, but afternoon quickies aren’t cutting it for me and getting to bed at the same time at night is nearly impossible. If we do go to bed at the same time, he is so exhausted from getting up so early and the 2 hour round trip commute that it’s usually only once a week on the weekends. This is frustrating for me and it’s especially frustrating for us both on the days when he comes home in the mood and there’s just no way it can happen. Can a marriage survive and thrive on quickies? I know that I feel like it’s not enough and I think that he does, too, but he’s so tired that sleep wins out. Any suggestions?

    • That’s an excellent question, Stephanie. I think I’ll start a “Reader Question” thing on the weekends, and this one will be my first question. So look for it this weekend! But people can feel free to chime in here, too!

  20. I struggle with this a lot, and it takes work on both parts. If all you’re getting on the week days are quick and are to fulfill the sexual need, I would think that you might want to spend more time on the weekends to meet your less physical intimacy needs. Stay up late or get up earlier on a day that his commute/job is less demanding and really take the time to put your all into both of your needs. Also maybe talk about the things you want to do extra on the days you have more time, so that you both have something to look forward to.
    Sally @ A Blessed Existence recently posted…The Hunger Games: A film reviewMy Profile

  21. I recently came across this series from seeing a friend’s pin on Pinterest. Thank you so much for taking the time to post these! I’ve been learning a lot.
    I would like to send in a reader question but I can’t seem to find an e-mail address on your blog! Would you please direct me to how I can contact you?
    Thanks

  22. Wow! 3-4 times per week! That’s how many times I’ve had sex in the past year and a half! This makes me feel even more terrible. My husband never wants to and I’ve tried initiating, trying to get him in the mood and all sorts of things but he rejects me every time :(

  23. My husband and I are in our mid-late 20s and have been married for almost two months, so we are still figuring this out. ;) We both have VERY healthy sex drives, but between the holidays, new families, both of us working full time, etc…there are days where we are both so exhausted we just don’t have any energy, and wind up going to bed at 8:30… A few nights we’ve even started foreplay, then both admitted we were too tired to keep going, ha.

    On top of that, because of a childhood injury and some traumatic experiences as a college student, sex was VERY painful for me for the first 4-5 weeks of marriage. It still hurts, but it’s bearable. My husband is a sweetheart who doesn’t push me at all, but I still make sure we have sex fairly regularly…I like figuring it all out even if it doesn’t always feel very good :) (Btw I have been to the doctor and there is nothing physically wrong “down there”, which is a relief!). On top of THAT, we are doing semi-natural birth control, so for about 10-12 days each month we either wait to have sex or use a condom – but that isn’t his favorite so sometimes we decide to forego it altogether and wait til after I’ve ovulated.

    Here’s my question though… When you say “at least twice a week”, does that include any method of “pleasure”? We may not have intercourse twice a week but we definitely find other ways to satisfy one another several times a week. Ny husband has told me many times he is perfectly happy with doing these other things on our “off” weeks.

    What are your thoughts?

    • Sarah, I think sometimes we classify “making love” as only intercourse, when I think the whole experience should count. So if you’re doing other things, and you’re feeling intimate and having fun, that’s all good!

  24. I’m just now finding this series, so forgive me if I missed where you addressed the wife having the higher sex drive? I’ve read a lot of your posts and comments and my husband and I don’t seem to fit any categories. I’ve always had a higher sex drive. When we were first together, it wasn’t as obvious because we weren’t living together, therefore, less opportunity. After we married and moved in together it became clear. He has a very demanding job. High stress. 16+ hours/day. I truly understand that he’s exhausted. For 5 years we’ve been together I don’t think we ever had sex more than 2/week. We have two kids now (toddler and baby) and it has dwindled more. I used to be the one to initiate every time (and would get turned down many times) I’m so exhausted with the kids now that I don’t initiate nearly as much. Which just leads to barely any sex because he’s usually too tired to make a move. We argue about this pretty often. He says he just “doesn’t want it that much”. It’s heartbreaking to me. There’s no porn, masturbation, cheating or anything, it’s just that simple. I’ve asked to go to counseling and he says no. Sometimes we go for 2 weeks with nothing. I know everyone is different and to some maybe that’s frequent. But I’m not happy like this! I love him and I know he loves me. We will never divorce, that’s just not an option. I want to work through these issues but its very difficult when he doesn’t want to talk about them or change them! What can I do??

    • Beth, that is such a difficult problem (and a really common one!). Here‘s the beginning of a series that I wrote about it (with links to subsequent follow up posts). I’d also recommend working through my 31 Days to Great Sex series with him if he’s willing. It has a lot in there even if the wife has the higher sex drive, and many of the challenges focus on communicating more and building your intimacy, not just sex. So you can start talking about why this is important to you. You can get that ebook here. It’s different from the 29 days series because I geared it more to couples, and included quite a bit for the wife with the higher sex drive!

  25. Excellent message, and the video is most enlightening, thanks.
    When a man reads the sentence “Why cannot he just love me for who I am ?”, it sounds like a woman thinks her body is somehow separate from her mind and emotions. For most husbands marriage really does revolve around sexual intimacy, and the less he enjoys it, the more he thinks about it. We men feel most loved and affirmed by the emotional bonding via sex with our wives.

  26. I’ve just reached the end of your 29 days and what a difference it has made in my marriage. We just went from 3-4 times a month to 6 times this week!! I find the more I take time to think about sex and communicate a message or 2 to him during the day, I have increased my sex drive and actually WANT it every night if he is willing and I have found a night of him being too tired yet ;) I also had to apologize to him and face issues on why I was withholding sex from him or feeling annoyed by him always wanting it. I have wanted to overcome it for so long, because even with my bad attitude, he pleases me and takes his time every single time! I found myself asking myself, “Why do you fight it when it is so amazing in the end?” Just watched your video on going in the pool and I am the same way with both topics!! LOL I have decided to jump in and also initiate and found myself more aroused lol. Funny how Satan wanted me to live a passionless marriage. So glad I found your blog searching for help to be better to my husband. He has been much more affectionate, loving, holding hands also. He has forgiven me. I no longer hide under the sheets, but tell him, if you like what you see, then I won’t hide the only naked body your allowed to see from you anymore. I got out of the car yesterday to buy some Astroglide for a quickie but chicken out and got back in the car. But I confessed it to him last night, so maybe he will pick it up or I can ask him if I can run out again. I also have a “Secret” text # to send him messages or be open to send them to me. Yesterday I text him, “So I was reading this blog and it suggested I be willing to try anything once…hmm” He text me back, “Hey I’m trying to work…LOL” And was home extra early that day LOL. Thank you Thank you Thank you for your willingness to talk about it. I was unwilling to try new things because I wanted to be a “good girl” but have found great joy in being brave in trying new things now and the results are amazing for both of us!!

    • Oh, my goodness, that text is so funny! I’ll BET he was home early! :)

      I’m so, so glad this has helped you, and so glad that it has made such a difference in your marriage! Thanks for sharing with me and encouraging ME, too.

  27. Have been watching your posts on FB for about a week now and have been very encouraged. But after seeing this post I came up with a question. I don’t turn him down – ever – well maybe once. When we first got married it was me. I was constantly after him and he was always tired. Do you ever address that scenario? Am I contributing to this? Because you are right – I feel rejected and wonder what is my worth. Does he ever want me? Did he? and the doubt goes on from there.

    We have had good times! We have 6 kids. But what you’re saying is true. There needs to be something different.

    Thank you!

    Jenni

  28. The more I read this blog, the worst I feel. I want to want to have sex and I have no idea why I don’t. Before we were married I was so exited to be with my husband and what sex would bring to our relationship. Four month later and it is just getting harder and harder to do.

Comment Policy: Please stay positive with your comments. If your comment is rude, it gets deleted. Any comment that espouses an anti-marriage philosophy (eg. porn, adultery, abuse and the like) will be deleted. If it is critical, please make it constructive. If you are replying to another commenter, please be polite and don't assume you know everything about his or her situation. If you are constantly negative or a general troll, you will get banned. The definition of terms is left solely up to us. Sheila Wray Gregoire owns the copyright to all comments and may publish them in whatever form she sees fit. She agrees to keep any publication of comments anonymous, even if you are not anonymous on this board.

Trackbacks

  1. […] not trying to answer the question how often should married couples have sex–I tackled that here–I want to look at the broader issues so that we can come to that […]

  2. […] we add to our marriages when things are good. It is something that we should be doing consistently, regularly, throughout our marriages, because it is part of what keeps our marriages good. And it is so very […]

Leave a Comment

*

CommentLuv badge