Too many people don’t understand the sexual response cycle–so let’s spell it out and figure out why this lack of info has become so prevalent in evangelicalism!

It’s time for a new podcast, and today’s podcast summarizes yesterday’s post on the sexual response cycle. 

What prompted this? Three weeks ago we analyzed one of Emerson Eggerichs’ podcasts, and I spit my tea when Connor told me that you can’t really tell if a woman is turned on. And then Eggerichs proceeded to teach that women get turned on when you vacuum, so if you want to turn her on, don’t try turning her on. 

He was equating “willingness to have sex” with arousal–and they are such totally different things. 

So let’s talk about how we got to this point, and then explain the sexual response cycle and see how it relates to two reader questions.

Or, as always, you can watch on YouTube:


Timeline of the Podcast

0:10 Announcements
3:15 Rebecca’s thoughts on sexy vacuuming
10:55 Dunning/Krueger Effect
23:00 Knowing you know nothing
31:00 What is really being misunderstood?
37:00 Consider looking at the money
42:00 The Sexual Response Cycle
46:45 RQ: My husband won’t initiate!
59:10 Encouragement

Thank you to our sponsor: The Intimately Us App

This is so much more than just a foreplay app–though it is that. It’s an app to help you learn about the entire sexual response cycle–how you grow desire (the wanting to have sex, not just the willingness to have sex); what gets you each excited; how to build arousal; and how to move towards orgasm!

Plus it’s super fun and helps get you out of that rut! And it’s not about making you do things you’re not comfortable with at all. Instead it’s about helping you each learn what you’re comfortable with, and what your spouse is comfortable with, and learn what makes each other tick.

It’s the app I would have made, if I had made an app!

Main Segment: The Dunning Krueger Effect and Knowledge of the Sexual Response Cycle

Rebecca gets her chance to respond to the podcast we analyzed (she wasn’t there when we initially talked about it), and we share Keith’s theory that this is evidence of the Dunning-Kruger effect:

Dunning Kruger Effect

Basically, when you start to learn a little bit about something, your confidence goes way up and you think you know everything. That’s the Peak of Mount Stupid. But as you learn a little more, you realize you actually know nothing (that’s the Valley of Despair). Then, as you gradually learn more, your confidence starts to grow again.

So our question is: when it comes to giving marriage and sex advice in the evangelical church, is there an incentive for teachers to remain on the Peak of Mount Stupid? Because we live in both a celebrity culture church and a hierarchical church where power is in the top (and that power is always in the hands of men) perhaps there isn’t any self-correction mechanism?

Reader Questions: My Husband Won’t Initiate

Keith and I then explained the sexual response cycle, and looked at two reader questions where it looks like lack of understanding of the cycle is playing a role.

I have never said no to my husband. I was told never to say no, and in over a decade of marriage I might have said the word once. For the last 3yrs(?), my husband has not been initiating. When we have sex it’s because I initiate. Talking to my husband, he says he doesn’t initiate because he feels like what’s the point of sex if it’s not good for me and he’s not into duty sex. 

I have been the only one to initiate sex. Even if I do initiate it he barely touches me or now even kisses me . He seems to only be interested in how great I make his body feel. The thing is that even if I get him so excited he is going to burst he will NOT make a move. It has to be me if intercourse is going to happen.. It’s like he is paralyzed to do anything. On the few occasions he ever tried to touch me during sex then he dives right in for the clitoris. No foreplay, no kissing. I have tried to express that I need him to touch me and turn me on but he says if I have to tell him what to do its as if he is being ordered around and that makes him a failure. He was exposed to pornography (playboy) when he was around 6 or 7 by an older brother. I have done all the paying attention to his body, wants and needs during sex and am hurting so much inside.

When we don’t understand the sexual response cycle, we can think that the wife isn’t sexual or is rejecting him because she’s not straight at arousal the way he often is. That’s why we need to understand that we all work differently, and work WITH our bodies! 

Keith and I go into this in great detail in both The Good Guy’s Guide to Great Sex and The Good Girl’s Guide to Great Sex! They’re both out March 15, and if you pre-order them now, you can get access to them right away, plus join our launch team and have an exclusive Facebook group!

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Things Mentioned in This Podcast:

Sexual Response Cycle Bare Marriage Podcast
Sheila Wray Gregoire

Sheila Wray Gregoire

Founder of To Love, Honor and Vacuum

Sheila is determined to help Christians find BIBLICAL, HEALTHY, EVIDENCE-BASED help for their marriage. And in doing so, she's turning the evangelical world on its head, challenging many of the toxic teachings, especially in her newest book The Great Sex Rescue. She’s an award-winning author of 8 books and a sought-after speaker. With her humorous, no-nonsense approach, Sheila works with her husband Keith and daughter Rebecca to create podcasts and courses to help couples find true intimacy. Plus she knits. All the time. ENTJ, straight 8

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