Wifey Wednesday: Hitting the Reset Button on your Sex Life

Do you need a fresh start in the bedroom? Hitting the reset button on your marriage.

Do you need a fresh start with your sex life?

It’s Wednesday, the day when we talk marriage! I introduce a topic, and then you follow up either by commenting or by writing your own post and then linking up! And today I want to talk about how to get a fresh start in the bedroom.

Have you established some bad habits with sex, and you want to start over, but you’re not sure how? You’re not alone! Here are some scenarios where a fresh start may be necessary:

      • When you first married, sex didn’t feel very good, but you didn’t know how to make it feel better. He seemed eager, so you gave in. Now it’s quick, you get very little pleasure, but he assumes that this is what sex is supposed to be like because you’ve never done anything else.
      • He asked you to try some things you weren’t comfortable with, but you did them. Now he assumes that this is what sex always will be. You get very little pleasure, but you don’t know how to change things.
      • You wanted him to feel like he was doing a good job, because it seemed so important to him, but you just didn’t feel very good during sex. So you started faking. And now he has no idea that you don’t enjoy sex, but you don’t know how to ask him to try other things because then he’d realize that all the good he thought he was doing was actually a ruse.
      • You have no idea if sex can actually be really fun or really stupendous, because it’s always been over in under 10 minutes. You’d like to find out if there’s more to it, but how do you ask him when he seems satisfied with what you have?

The majority of marriages face these kinds of problems, so if you relate to one (or more) of those options, you are not alone.

But how can we get a fresh start with sex?

Sex is often hard to talk about, because we’re embarrassed talking about what we want, and we don’t want to hurt his feelings or his sense of manliness by saying that it’s not all we’d like it to be. But not talking about it can be very dangerous for your sex life in the long run. When it seems like it’s “just for him”, you can start to grow resentful, and feel like he’s being selfish. This isn’t always fair, because quite frequently the guy doesn’t realize that you’re not really enjoying it, because it’s so good for him. But that makes you even more mad: doesn’t he even notice how I’m feeling?!? And eventually you check out altogether.

So you must deal with this! You need a reset.

Getting a fresh start in the bedroom: hitting the reset button in your marriage.

Here are some ways to do so constructively:

1. Talk About Wanting More, Not Doing it “Right”

Men are very sensitive about their sexual skills, and if you start a conversation saying something like “I’ve never felt pleasure, it’s always been for you, and now we have to do it differently”, this could be quite destructive. Now, you may have the kind of relationship where you can talk like this and it wouldn’t be hurtful, but that’s rare. I think a better way of phrasing it would be something like this:

I love being intimate with you, but I feel like we’re missing something. I want more. I want it to be stupendous. I feel like it’s been rushed, and while I love being with you, I don’t want to settle for good or okay. I want great! Can we try to create great together?

If he asks you what you mean, tell him that you’d like to experience more emotional intimacy when you make love, and you’d like to see if you can build towards orgasm. You likely need more foreplay, and you want it to be fun. So you want a reset!

2. Ask Him How He Feels

Ask him how he feels about your sex life, too. If you’re in the position that we talked about yesterday, where you made love before you were married, and this set you up with some bad habits, ask him how he feels about that. Ask him what he’d like your sex life to look like, and then make a commitment to get there.

3. Ask Him to Help You Feel Pleasure

Most men honestly do want to bring pleasure to their wives. It’s part of feeling like they’re men! But they may not realize that their wives don’t experience pleasure in the same way. Instead of saying, “I’ve never felt good”, or “you’re doing it wrong”, say something like, “I really want to see what all the fuss is about. I want to be out of control with you! Can you help me get there?” If you ask for his help, rather than criticize what he’s doing, you set a different tone.

4. Pray Through Your Reset

Commit your sex life to God. If a lot of your issues are rooted in baggage–whether baggage from past relationships or baggage from having sex before you were married–confess what you need to before God, and then ask Him to give you His view of sex now: that it is sacred and beautiful.

5. Make Your Reset Visible

If the reset is necessary because of hurtful patterns in the past, it may be helpful to try a “physical reset”. Buy different bedding. Change the position of the bed in your bedroom. Buy new candles or new pillows. Do something different so that you can see “we are different now”.

6. Take Time to Reset

Usually the problem when a reset is required is either that you have been stressing the physical so much that there isn’t a sense of spiritual or emotional intimacy, or you’ve been rushing through sex so there isn’t enough foreplay.

If you want to jumpstart this reset, try this: commit to each other that you will spend a week just getting to know each other’s bodies and feeling intimate without actually making love. This doesn’t mean you can’t climax; but it means that you do it in different ways after learning what you actually like. One exercise that is very helpful is setting a timer for 15 minutes and having him touch you for that full time. You can start to relax and understand what feels good, without feeling guilty like you “really should get on to the main event”. One of the reasons that many women don’t feel pleasure is because they don’t give it enough time. We think we should respond just like men do, but that’s not the way we’re made. If you do this exercise, then you don’t need to feel guilty or freakish if you need time to become aroused. And when he sees what you’re really like when you’re aroused, he’ll want to keep doing it!

I know not having intercourse is a stretch. But here’s why it’s important: if you don’t set a time schedule, you could agree you want a reset, but then you may easily fall into other patterns. By saying “we won’t have sex, but we will just be intimate and touch each other and explore” you dedicate yourself to more foreplay, and you make a definitive break.

One word of warning: if you need the reset because your husband has been insisting on “shortcuts” for sex, then this may not be the best plan for you. For instance, I’ve had numerous emails from women saying that their husband likes oral sex during the week because they’re always rushed, and he finds that easier. And the women are tired of it. In that case, touching but not making love may not be the best idea. So here’s another way of phrasing it: whatever you’re not comfortable doing, then stop doing that for a week or so.

7. Put This Into Practice

Now have some honest discussions about how you can keep this reset going. Do you need to agree that you come to bed at 10:00 each night together–even if one of you gets up at 11 when the other is ready for sleep to go watch a movie? Do you pray more together? Do you take more baths together? Do you get a baby-sitter more often so you spend time together? Talk about what new habits you need to develop to keep sex fresh.

8. Embark on Some Fun Education!

Learn together! How about some specifics in the sex department. When you want a reset, you likely need to figure out how to make sex feel good. Here are a few posts from my 29 Days to Great Sex series that can help:

1. How to Orgasm
2. The Pleasure Centre (how to make intercourse feel better)
3. Why Foreplay Matters
4. How to Help HIM enjoy Foreplay
5. Reawaken Your Body (about how to take some time to just explore your bodies)
6. How to Connect Spiritually When Making Love

Of course, a wonderful reset is to work through the whole 29 Days to Great Sex together! But if that’s too much, even taking a week to read through these articles and have fun exploring can do wonders. Just dedicate it to God, approach the week as a fun research project, rather than a “corrective lesson” for him, and I hope you find that sex becomes something you can eagerly anticipate again!

Good Girls Guide My SiteI also highly recommend The Good Girls Guide to Great Sex. If sex has just never felt very good, or you’ve never really felt intimate, then this book will help you so much. It explains how things are supposed to work physically, goes over all the problems you can run into, and talks about how to make it stupendous! But it also talks at length about how to spiritually connect during sex. So do check out the book!

If you liked this post, please hit the share buttons on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter below! So many of us need practical marriage advice!

Now it’s your turn! Do you have marriage thoughts for us today? Write your own Wifey Wednesday post that links back to here, and then leave the link of THAT POST in the Mcklinky below. Thanks!


  1. I needed to press the reset button in our marriage because him climaxing every time and me climaxing never was very frustrating. I was embarrassed to tell him what felt good, even though he said he wanted me to. He went so far as to say, “until you tell me what feels good, I’m not going to initiate sex b/c I feel guilty that I enjoy it so much and you don’t.” We went on like that for a few years – me being the initiator and still not really telling him enough to reach orgasm! I was stupid! When I finally got up the guts to approach the subject, I did so by printing off instructions I found on “The Generous Husband” blog entitled “Orgasmic Massage.” I gave it to him toward the end of the week and said that even though I enjoy the closeness we have during sex, I’d like to try these suggestions during the upcoming weekend and see what happens. I then bathed the matter in prayer leading up to that weekend. I had never really prayed about our sex life before. I don’t know why; if I can trust Christ with my eternal home in Glory, why can’t I trust Him for issues in my marriage?) — what happened? My first ever orgasm and a new, much more pleasurable (for him and me) weekly activity. He really does enjoy pleasuring me and is much more patient than I imagined he would be. Of course, this intensified intimacy has spilled over into other areas of our marriage, too, so it’s truly been a blessing!

    • That’s wonderful, Becky! Thanks so much for sharing. I think a lot of women will get some encouragement from your comment. Sometimes it’s hard to broach the subject with our husbands because we do feel embarrassed, but if you’re really not enjoying sex, you need to! It’s meant to be so much more, and I’m glad you’ve discovered that.

    • simply amazing! I want to start our marriage off right! My girl friend and I are planning to get married, yet we had sex before!… I have been on deployment for the past 4 moths and wont be back for a few more, though, I met someone over here that has changed my view, in a positive and stronger sense. The best way I could describe it as is that he was my physical helping hand in getting me over that wall to Jesus Christ. I now do understand why sex is a sin before marriage! I do want to make love to my girlfriend, yet I want our relationship to be way more with our sex lives in our marriage, so you could say im putting a Pause on our current sex life because I want to have a more intament relationship with her once were married and pure! Her and I both agreed to this when I brought it to her attention! I was scarred because we love making love with eachother! but now I know what is right from wrong! I just need help form God to get us there! Is hard when I haven’t seen her in 7 months, but with Jesus! we can accomplish anything!!

  2. Securely Desired says:

    Why is it your posts are always right on topic exactly when I need them?

    First – I bought your book and LOVED LOVED LOVED it. I received it a few weeks ago, but saved it to take with me on vacation. Hubby and I both read your blog nightly, often together, and we talk about your posts, and the comments that follow. Anyway – we had planned to really make some positive changes in our love life on this vacation – and of course, the best laid plans… The day after we arrived, he came down with a nasty cold combined with eye and throat infections. You know,I think one of the best pieces of advice for us at that moment was to remember we have the rest of our lives. Another time we would have pushed it because “we were on vacation we had to”. But your words reminded me to tell my wonderful husband that I adored a million things about him and if “that’ didn’t happen – we could still have a wonderful memorable vacation.

    And – of course – I caught that cold the day before we left… 😉

  3. What if the re-set I need is to stop dissociating through fantasy? My brain just won’t shut off! I stay away from material that could be considered even remotely suggestive and yet the images are still there. I’ve been reading your book – totally fantastic by the way – and like the suggestions on pages 145-151 about how to overcome these problems. Do I come clean with my husband and tell him that I’ve been doing this for over a decade? He knows about my exposure to porn as a young child, and that I’ve had “issues” ever since so it wouldn’t come as a complete shock, but I don’t think he’s connected the dots as far as how past events affect me to this day. I’ve managed to stay present a handful of times over the last few months (to the point of orgasm twice), but when I get stressed or tired, I slip back into old thought patterns because I know I will climax every time that way. Am I really so desperate that I’m posting this on the internet? I think I need to go throw up now. :-)

    • I actually deal with this quite a bit in my book, because it is not at all uncommon. A LOT of women deal with this. I wrote about dissociating here, and I hope that helps you. There is more in The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex, though. As for whether or not you should tell him, I have a hard time giving definite advice on that, because it could really hurt him. In general I’m a big proponent of honesty, but I don’t know your relationship. What I would say is that you should be honest with him at least to say that you want a reset so that you can feel really spiritually intimate and learn how to concentrate on him. That’s great that when you stay present you are able to orgasm, so you’re really the majority of the way there! Keep taking it to God, don’t rush things, and give yourself a long time for sex, if you can, so that you can be relaxed and not pressure yourself to fantasize to “finish soon”. Hope that helps!

      • I can’t tell you how grateful that I am that I found your book. Before reading it, I felt like I was the only one who struggled with this and I spent so much time wondering what on earth was wrong with me. I didn’t even know what to call it (dissociating). I was afraid to google “fantasy during sex” because I didn’t think that the results would have been what I was looking for!

        I’d had the conversation with my husband already about wanting to be more connected and intimate during sex. He had noticed a difference in me (when I was present in the moment) and was confused as to why I seemed to be having more fun and yet was not able to orgasm consistently. I needed him to know that he was not doing anything wrong, so I explained that given my past, I found it harder to climax while being connected and I wanted to change that. Needless to say, he was pretty enthusiastic about that idea.

        When stress kicked in, I started slipping back into my head. It was worse at this point though because after experiencing being connected, it felt absolutely horrible dissociating. I was climaxing and then crying. What started out as a few tears that I could hide the first few times eventually turned into those horrible sobs that just won’t stop. At that point, I figured that the truth couldn’t be any worse than what he was imagining. We have a strong relationship, my husband is a very secure person, and I know he would do absolutely anything for me.

        So, the next day, I elaborated on what I meant by disconnecting – enough so that he would know what I meant, but without getting overly specific on content. While he wasn’t exactly thrilled to hear what I had to say, he was glad that I told him so that we could work on it together.

        We started doing the 29 days of great sex, which has been fun. We’re still working on re-training my brain for a consistent o, but for the first time in my life, I am experiencing sexual pleasure with no guilt. So, this is how it’s supposed to be!

        • Mary, that is so wonderful! I’m really happy for you. It does make such a tremendous difference when we’re really connecting, doesn’t it?

  4. I have the opposite problem, he doesn’t want sex. I orgasm almost every time, but its been 7 months. He says it’s not important to him and he doesn’t care if it’s important to me. I can’t talk to him about it, he shuts down. Oh yeah, he is on testosterone and only has sex with himself. I also can’t make the first move, he shuts down. You know, I’m really tired of making the first move anyway,,,I’ve told him about my fantasies…he hasn’t made a move to fulfill them. Is there anything other than divorce. We’ve been married 16 years.

    • Kathy, if he’s masturbating, then that is the root of your problem. It isn’t you; it’s what he’s doing. I have a post on that here that may help. I’m so sorry you’re going through this; that must be so, so lonely, and definitely not what was designed to happen.

  5. What about when the reset you need is due to physical issues that just won’t resolve? I was a virgin when I got married, and my gyno confirmed about 8 months later that I do have vaginismus. I’ve never been good at relaxing, either physically or mentally, and I’m sure that’s a big part of the issue. It’s not so bad that we can’t do anything, but I’ve never been able to have pain-free sex with my husband, and I’ve never been able to orgasm. I’ve prayed about it, I’ve read blog posts and both of your books (as well as a few others), and I did try the vaginismus kit you recommended, but didn’t get very far before I had to stop trying the dilators because I got pregnant. I’m at the beginning of the third trimester now, and I’m absolutely terrified that the pain of labor will make this problem even worse. He’s been very patient with me, especially over the last several months because I’ve been sick to varying degrees the entire time. But is there anything I can do to make this actually start working after the baby comes? I’m so tired of feeling like I’m a terrible wife in this area!

    • rebekah says:

      hi Becky, I just wanted to write to encourage you. I don’t have the health issues that you do, and I am so sorry, but I just wanted to encourage you that you probably have already had your baby, but sex can be better after the baby comes. I just had my first baby and although sex was painful the first few times, it also feels much better than before I had the baby. I pray that this will be your experience to and the journey of having a baby and motherhood will grow you and your husband closer and enable you to relax more and enjoy the experience. Don’t give up!

      • Thanks for that, Rebekah! I’m actually still around 3ish weeks away from having the baby, so I haven’t really been able to tell if that will be the case for me yet. But I do appreciate you taking the time to send me that encouragement.

  6. Vanessaa says:

    My husband was hooked on pain pills, now he is off of them taking suboxodne, he works on the dredge, he is gone 2 weeks and home one week, he never wants to have sex with me or touch me, he stays ill all the time, and I can’t do anything right ,,I feel like he would never cheat on Me, but I know something not right, if I try to talk to him about it he blows up,,I don’t know what else to do, I found porn on his phone ,,he never wants to seee naked, or take a shower together or anything ,all we do is cuddle and sleep when he is home , I try to pUT the move on him ,and he gets I’ll and pushes me away , help me

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