Sex is Basic to Marriage

Sex is Basic to Marriage

We know of some couples who are going through some very hard times and the wives refuse to be intimate with their husbands. Yes, we can try to guess what the husbands are doing wrong that the wives don’t want to have sex with them but we must still focus upon obeying God even when the other spouse is not in some areas. Most times in these situations, the wives don’t want to talk to me because they know what I will tell them, so we pray.

I read an article by a woman, who is not a Christian, entitled What Sleeping With Married Men Taught Me About Infidelity. She prefers married men because she doesn’t have to worry about the long-term emotional attachment since they have wives, children, and mortgages. She wrote, “What surprised me was that husbands weren’t looking to have more sex. They were looking to have any sex…I suppose I would hope his needs would involve fishing trips or beers with friends. But sex is basic. Physical intimacy with other human beings is essential to our health and well being. So how do we deny such a need to the one we care about most? If our primary relationship nourishes and stabilizes us but lacks intimacy, we shouldn’t have to destroy our marriage to get that intimacy somewhere else, should we?”

The answer is no. God is clear that we are not to deprive each other sexually. She found that most married men simply wanted sex and would prefer sex with their own wives. They live with them day in and day out and are attracted to their wives. This is what happens when members of the opposite sex live in the same house, dress in front of each other, and sleep in the same bed. This shouldn’t surprise women.

Men have ten times the testosterone than women and their sex drive is typically much higher than women’s. Wives need to know this so they will keep their husbands sexually satisfied at home so they won’t go elsewhere looking for it. No, the husbands shouldn’t do this but even God’s Word warns us about this. “Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency (1 Corinthians 7:5).” When wives deprive their husbands, they are opening up their husbands to be tempted by Satan. This is not good at all! We are to do nothing to cause our brothers to stumble, no, not even our husbands.

The author said these husbands didn’t tell their wives about their longing for sex and finding it elsewhere because they didn’t want to hurt their wives. The author thought the lie was worse than the affair. Most husbands probably tell their wives how much they want sex but not to the extent since they know how their wives will respond. More rejection. This is why God commands older women to teach younger women to love their husbands which includes satisfying them sexually. Husbands go to work daily even when they don’t feel like it. Wives need to be sexually available to their husbands even if they don’t feel like it. We lives our lives based upon obedience not feelings.

Yes, there are some men who will have affairs even if their wives are available sexually and there are times when a wife simply cannot be available sexually because of health issues, giving birth, and issues such as these. I am not speaking about these specific cases but if you are married to a man who loves you and wants sex with you, I am writing to you.

Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.
1 Corinthians 7:3, 4

35 thoughts on “Sex is Basic to Marriage

  1. Articles like this are so crazy to me! I have never.. and will never.. turn down my husband for sex. I pray other wives figure it out and give their husbands what they need! Honestly though, in our relationship I’m usually the one needing and wanting it more. It’s so beautiful in marriage!

  2. This article is so true. Some basic statistics. A marriage with sex (any form of sex) happening less than once a month is considered a sexless marriage. The majority of studies show that in general 20-25% of all marriages are sexless with a solid 15% continued sexless indefinitely. The short term reasons vary from separation due to work – military, long term work assignments, etc. to health issues causing sexless periods. The most important issue comes when the spouse returns or is healed – does sex resume? In some cases the spouse may not even seek out medical help or continue to ask for foreign assignments. Men may not seek out ways to increase low testosterone or ED. Women will use HBC (hormonal birth control) which kills libido, or they go into menopause and not seek out treatments for dryness. Thus sex cannot happen for weeks which turn into months which turn into years.

    As for the temptations. They are there and they may not lead into sexual affairs or porn use. They may lead to envy and jealousy. A man sees his buddies having regular sex with their wives and he may become envious of them. He may be lead to do other acts that are just as sinful as having an affair. One thing I have noticed in my work life is that the younger women are more open about their sex lives and open to one night stands. Some are open to be long term mistresses as long as the man provides a nice place for her to stay.

    I will attest that the temptations do get stronger and call out more because I do live in a basically sexless marriage where my wife had refused for medical reasons. All legitimate but all are curable with a simple solution or a simple plan of action to improve her pH balance android something about her dryness. Because of my love for God, my cheapness, my love for my wife and family, and general shyness I did not let the temptations grab hold of me. So, yes, I understand first hand what this is like. There are many men (and some women) who are in the same boat. Pray that God will change their hearts and he Holy Spirit will convict them to do what is needed to get back the sex life. One of the top 5 reasons for men to get married is to have sex on a regular basis because marriage is the only legitimate way for a couple to have sex. So my advice is women, be your husbands sure thing. Even if you have to schedule it once or twice a week do what it takes to be healthy and ready for the time of intimacy. Think about how the church has intimate times with Christ – Communion, worship times, prayer, reading the Bible, etc. Now think of the intimate times with your husband what do you do for him that meets his intimate needs not just yours.

    1. My body was forced into early menopause at the age of 45 years old because of brain surgery that injured my pituitary. Cyber Knife eventually practically killed my pituitary which controls all hormones in the body. I have had to go on full hormone replacement so if anyone knows about medical issues concerning sexual relationships, I can relate BUT I still choose to have open arms towards my husband and we find a way to make it work and still enjoy each other. There are ways to satisfy a spouse sexually without intercourse at times (which I am sure most couples can figure out) but it takes a willing spouse.

    2. One more sexual discord I have witnessed and experianced is sex being used as reward and punishment. No sex for you becasue you have wronged me – from not doing what was asked for to committing a sin or perceived sin. On the flip you may have sex with me becasue you have done what I have asked you to do.

    3. This is why God in His Word has a mandate for both spouses to not neglect having regular sex. Even if one does not “feel” like it or illness prevents it for a time, it is the desire to please one’s spouse that sits at the root of love and good marriage. Find a way to intimacy and keeping the marriage bed healthy.

  3. This is such a great topic to share and teach! I like to tell younger wives with little ones that it’s OK to say when you’re wiped, “Give me a little time to take a short nap and a bath and I’ll be right with you!” It makes making love even more enjoyable and engaging if you are at that stage in life.

    What a very interesting perspective from the woman who wrote the article. From her point of view, men had a hard time opening up to their wives to discuss issues, period. I have to admit, I am humbled and have to constantly ask myself, “Does my husband feel safe to talk openly and share what is on his heart and mind without a reaction from me that would close the door of communication? Am I willing to do the same for him?”

    Peace and Love,
    A Sister in Christ

    1. Thank you, Deanna. The way to make sure our husbands feel comfortable talking and sharing with us is by not have negative and critical attitudes towards them. When they know that we love them unconditionally and accept them the way that they are (unless there is blatant sin that needs to be addressed), then they feel free to be themselves.

  4. I have been a faithful husband for 15 years but have struggled with a mostly sexless marriage. My wife confessed to me after 7 years of marriage that she had 2 abortions back when she was in college before we met. She went to abortion recovery at church but never once did they reach out to me to counsel me on the possible ramifications to our marriage of this secret she kept for so long.

    We have 3 children and it has been clear that her devotion to them is driven by normal motherly instincts but also seems to go to the extreme of coddling them and not wanting to discipline them at all. I can’t help but feel the guilt over the abortions affects how she deals with her children.

    I also believe it has distorted her view of men in general and caused her to focus her anger at me even though I had nothing to do with the abortions. I had very little knowledge of her prior sexual history except that she had one but wouldn’t say anything specific. She just told me that the Lord turned her life around after she graduated college.

    I was a virgin when we got married and so I was very naive about sex and wasn’t the experienced lover she apparently was used to. So after our first child was born, the sex became her least priority.

    I have spent 15 years struggling with feelings of rejection. If it weren’t for the fact that our only computer is kept in the main family room with filters on it, I probably would be a porn addict by now. Instead, I steal sin by taking care of myself in the shower if it has been weeks since we were together.

    Last year we went on a cruise to the Caribbean and finally had sex for the first time in six months. She tells me I am making sex too important and quotes are marriage counselor who told us that sex was not a need but only a desire. He told me I wouldn’t die without it.

    I love our kids but I am so jealous of them because they get every last bit of my wife’s love and attention. She never put them in a crib after they were born because she wanted them sleeping right besides her so she could nurse them easily. None of our children were weaned before they were three years old, either. Not that I object to this because it is healthier for the baby, but it came at the risk of our marriage and my sanity.

    I feel less like a man every day and I just got checked and my testosterone levels are terribly low. The doctor wants to put me on a replacement therapy that is very expensive and I just don’t know if I can afford to be a real man again.

    I can’t emphasize enough to the women who read your blog what it does to a man to be neglected and rejected.

    1. I am so sorry to hear your story, RickyB, as it is a sad one of how sin and sins of the past can carry with someone like your wife and in turn rip the heart out of her husband and marriage.

      Just a couple of thoughts. First I assume you have spoken to your wife about these things and poured out your heart without being judgmental or attacking? Communication is vital that she grasp not just that you want sex, but long to have her as your wife. All of her, not just the little bit she is willing dole out to you sometimes. I found that writing it out in hand writing or by email often communicated best in times when a young mother can be easily distracted.

      If you are a Believer and she claims to be one too, you have an easy response to her psychologist in giving what the Word requires of both spouses when it comes to sex. No, we cannot force or cajole our spouses to have sex or be submissive, but we certainly can remind them to take up their recalcitrance with Jesus and talk to Him about it. Any spouse who is open to the leading of the Spirit will respond quickly to God’s call on their lives.

      As for you, you must remain strong in the Lord. This idea that somehow she is making you into less of a man is also not in keeping with God’s Word in your life. If you have died with Christ and are risen to a new life, “dead things don’t care about the things of this world.” Our focus is on Jesus and His example of obedience to the cross. No matter what comes our way in life, we smile and hand it to God to take that burden from us. And if He leaves it with us for a while, we indeed know that He will never give us more than we can handle and that He will be our strength through it all.

      So pull yourself up by believing God at His Word, and next time with the counselor ask him what God says on the matter of regular sex. It makes little difference if you will not die without it if God has already given the prescription for a healthy marriage. It takes only 5-10 minutes a day, or every other day, for a wife to please her man with or without intercourse. But you can’t be selfish back in pushing and prodding after you have made yourself and your hurts clear on the matter. Instead, get to a Christian counselor who will teach the healing power of Word to both of you relying on God’s promises that you are indeed new creatures and past sins cannot touch you, unless you let them. You both need to learn who you are in Christ Jesus so you can treat each other fairly and kindly without having past sins that we done away with on a cross in 30 A.D. still impacting your marriage.

      1. The low testosterone is what makes men feel like less of a man. But that is probably a separate issue that relates to me gaining weight to deal with my feelings of being rejected. I have a lot of emotional issues that God will have to deal with irrespective of the sexual divide between my wife and I.

        As far as the counselor is concerned, he is a Christian and I have decided to find another counselor that is more sensitive to the sexual needs of our marriage rather than dismissive. He was an older man who had a much more genteel and chivalrous approach that may have worked in the pre-feminist era. But women are not as submissive as they used to be and if they don’t want sex then they think they have a right to refuse for whatever reason they think is right.

        I did write her an email about my feelings and she wrote me back saying that I was making sex into an idol. I told her that was like accusing a starving man of making food an idol. And back and forth it goes with no progress.

        Unfortunately, the Women’s bible studies at our church do not follow Titus 2. They are mostly geared toward self esteem building and not toward instructing women on how to love their husbands, which Lori addressed in her excellent blog post Always Learning: The Problem with Female Bible Churches http://lorialexander.blogspot.com/2016/04/the-problem-with-female-bible-teachers.html

        My wife would be a lot more aware of this as a problem if she were getting wise counsel from another woman she trusts. I have no credibility in her eyes since I am a man and inherently selfish when it comes to sex.

        1. You both will need to find a way to step out of your box that you see yourself in and jump into the life that Christ has given you. If you email me at Lori’s email Laalex2@aol.com I will send you a couple of articles I have written on Outside the Box and on our New Lives in Christ. I suggest you share both with your wife and have some discussions about them.

          What happens over time and with hurts is that each spouse jumps into their Box and no longer sees the other person as a whole person with hopes, and dreams and needs, desires, even wanting love. In the Box it is hard to see as one is focused on self instead of on the other person and common decency solutions to real problems. Each time a quip is made or disrespect shown the other party pulls out their own guns and begins firing.

          To move beyond this means one party, ideally both, decide to start over again. To stay out of the Box and play life with the other person. No more limits, no more later, no more excuses, just making a real attempt to please the other person.

          Once out of the Box a while, each party begins to feel more comfortable and vulnerable. “No” to sex from time to time does not mean “not ever,” but rather can you give me some space. Ideally the “no” begins to be followed by, “But how about tomorrow morning.”

          The question you two must ask each other is what is the end game you are seeking for your relationship? If the end game is a loving Christian marriage then there is no better time to step out of the Box and try to please each other. When failures happen, and they will, pride yourselves on how fast you can both shake hands and jump out of your Boxes to please each other again.

          The best way to please a spouse is a commitment by both to “Do all things Christian.” To use God’s Word and the fruit of His Spirit as your guide. Be willing to allow your spouse to catch you if you fall short of God’s Word and glory, then get back on track.

          The Church is broken when it comes to the training of our young men and young woman. Training that used to begin at home no longer exists for many Christians, neither is there accountability. Your older Christian counselor is still back in the olden days when indeed the vast majority of marriage issues came from husbands being harsh or shown indifference. She may have dutifully done her part of marriage all the while he was not loving her well. So counselors pounded on young men to just “love your wife better” and everything will fall into place as a wife naturally desires to follow your leadership. WOW have things changed and indeed it is 70% women who are dissatisfied, disinterested, and disrespectful, even as many Christian husbands try to love them back to no avail. Yes, feminism and christian counseling masquerading as “Christian” is much to blame.

          Bottom line… you have to be a loving, understanding, and generous husband to your difficult wife. In this dot on the line of eternity what you do with this life in being Jesus to your wife has huge repercussions for the life to come. And never lose hope! I lost hope a few times, but now happy as can be with my once difficult wife. God still does miracles, so trust he has you where he wants you.

    2. Ignore your wife and focus solely upon improving yourself.

      Don’t even waste time trying to please her. Be nice and kind, but don’t go out of your way to be nice and kind.

      Say to yourself, ‘From Today on It’s all About Me’…and hit up crossfit, work on your health and diet, and join a sport or activity that you’ve always wanted to do. Join a men’s club of some sort.

      Do not cheat, do not divorce her. Just consider this your time to become Awesome.

      Forget sex, you have to worry about your health and hopefully you’ll be too sore from crossfit to be interested in it. Don’t even pester her for it. You have better things to do with your time.

      – Crossfit
      – Men’s Club
      – Acting Classes
      – Stand-up Comedy Classes
      – Sports
      – Intellectual Clubs–history, books, screenwriting

      You have been giving a great gift by your wife…The Excuse to Be Selfish.

      Take it.

      (But don’t cheat..either emotionally or physically…activities should not involve talking to other women..,ignore any women who happen to be there)

      And as a result, she will come back to you because she’ll sense that you no longer need her.

      1. “You have been giving a great gift by your wife…The Excuse to Be Selfish.”

        I hate to break it to you but my three children took away any right to be selfish my wife has theoretically given me. My outside activities were given up for the sake of our children and until they are grown up and moved out then my right to be selfish will just have to be exercised later.

        There is a semblance of good advice in what you said in that I do need to focus on self-improvement. But the Catch-22 is that for this to work, I have to proceed from the assumption that sex is permanently off the table. But the whole reason I would do this is to get sex back on the table.

        I feel like I can’t win here.

  5. I have found this to be such a valuable truth in my marriage as well. My husband has the confidence and assurance that he’ll never be turned away in our bed, his needs will always be welcomed with open arms and a smile on my face 🙂

  6. My husband is a woodworker and has been working on a series type project. Looking at his latest creation last night, I said, “wow…you are getting so good at making these…what is your secret?” He blurted out, “Twenty years of good sex with my wife”. How I love that man!

    1. Love it, but to some degree it may be very true. Men get so much of a good sense in life from regular sexual intimacy, knowing they are loved and are able to love one other person that they then go out and work hard for.

  7. In the begining of our marriage I tried many ways to avoid sex and it would make my husband feel upset and unwanted. About two years ago we ended up having an argument about our lack of intimacy and I told him how extremely uncomfortable it was for me and that’s why I’ve been avoiding being with him. He was apologetic and was upset with me for not coming to him sooner about the problem. I went to see a specialist and was told i have endometriosis and that’s what was causing the pain. I had an operation and he was able to remove about 90% of the endometriosis and after my recovery we were able to finally enjoy being together.

    1. Yay! Yes, if sex does not feel good, or hurts, why would someone want to have it. So getting to the root causes and cures is vital. But being married to a wife who has been sick or in pain more days of our marriage than healthy, sexual intimacy can happen with a committed couple even when intercourse cannot. Just the warmth, closeness, and enjoyment of each other is more than half the benefits.

  8. Early in our 21 year marriage, sex became an issue. Debi Pearl’s book helped me so much on this. I didn’t understand men – and I guess I still don’t know, truly, what it’s like for my husband as a man. But I decided just to take his word for it , and for him that meant sex 3-4x/week. So, I thought, “Ok, well, that’s not too difficult.” (It’s not like trying to make a complicated meal or perform rocket science). He tells me “men are pretty simple. If you feed them (with food and sex), they are pretty happy.” Well, with my husband, that’s pretty true. Makes life pretty simple. To women who think this is demeaning, I say, if this man is my best friend, wouldn’t I want to do things that make him happy? This definitely makes him happy. And usually it is something I really needed, too, but just wasn’t as “tuned in” to it.

    1. You have a soft, teachable heart to truth, T.J. Many women find this post repulsive, even Christian women.

      What happened to being like Christ – the greatest of all is the servant of all? What about denying ourselves for others especially the one we’ve committed our lives for?

      Feminism has taken so much away from women: being feminine, kind, loving, warm, affectionate, submissive, etc.

      Your husband is blessed because you understand his needs!

  9. This post is true. It is very hard for a marriage where there is no sex, to survive.

    One article I did read (not from a Christian perspective) that I found helpful said that a woman wants sex when she feels loved. But a man wants sex to feel loved.
    So basically, men and women are polar opposites here. Women don’t want sex when they don’t feel loved, but men don’t feel loved without sex. It’s a vicious circle.

    There have been so many times in my marriage when I have not wanted sex, because my husband was not treating me well (due to addiction, mostly). There have been times when I told him outright why it wasn’t a happening thing – I told him I was not interested in being intimate with a man who was being cruel. Looking back on it now though, I wonder if that was the right thing to do. Maybe it wasn’t.

    1. It’s a tough one, KAK, and I’m sure it depends upon the details of the situation. If you were withholding sex simply to punish him, then yes, it was wrong. If he was asking you to do inappropriate things, then no, it wasn’t wrong.

      I don’t like to think of any women being treated cruelly but then I look at our Savior and how cruelly He was treated because of our sin. “Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.” (1 Peter 3:1, 2)

      In situations like yours, I believe it is best to have an older, godly woman in one’s life to help make wise decisions regarding their husband since every situation is so different. They need guidance, support, and encouragement in order to do the best and wisest thing for the marriage.

  10. Thank you for this article. I hope it’s okay to ask this question, please know it is genuine and coming from a real place. If a wife and husband (both Christians) have been sleeping separately for a long time due to some physical and emotional hardships, say 5-6 years, and have grown distant (living more like friends/roommates than husband and wife) but still want to save their marriage, what first steps should be taken? Especially when the husband, although not wanting a divorce, seems to be not as interested as the wife does in making amends and refuses counseling? Where does the wife even begin? Should she try to ease into it first by becoming close friends again first? What about maybe staring with a book, like “The Love Dare”, if an older mentor isn’t available?

    1. Katrina,
      I would suggest if the husband does not want to go to counseling, I would tell the wife to go on her own at first. It is important to find a. Female counselor. Let your husband know what you are doing, where you will be and what time you expect to be home. Then start going regularly and live out 1 peter 3 in front of him. Pray for him regularly and stay in the word.

      Do not put pressure on him. To perform at this stage. Come to him if he asks. But important healing needs to take place first. You will find if you do it this way first, you will naturally become friends and then lovers again. And when you pray, pray about your sex life. God created it, so He should know how it all works. And don’t be shy about dressing up nicely for him. An attractive woman is hard to resist, especially if she is available and ‘ready’. Many couples make the mistake of sleeping in separate beds after an argument. Or during a difficult time in a marriage. I rarely sleep separately to my husband. I just tell him I’m staying put and if he wants to sleep separately, that’s his business. Loria don’t Ken may not share these views, so I’ll let them interject. 🙂

    2. I encourage you to begin being kind towards him, Katrina. Learn what pleases him (you most likely already know) and do those things whether they be his favorite meal, dessert, or whatever. Smile at him every single time you see him. This is usually the first assignment I give wives who want to begin treating their husbands with kindness.

      Grow in godliness by being in the Word daily and allowing the Lord to transform you into a meek and quiet spirited women. Pray daily for your marriage and wait upon the Lord!

    3. If you want a book recommendation, Created to be his helpmeet by Debi Pearl and Lori’s book The Transformed Wife were the best ones for me. I thought I was a “good” wife, but when I read these books, I seen so many areas that I didn’t even consider. Wonderful books!

    4. Look Pretty.

      Everday. Always have your hair done, always have makeup on, hit the gym, hit up a dance class/pilates reformer for posture.

      Most important thing about a female is her looks. (heartbreaking to write that but true)

  11. My husband and I believe that when God said way back in Genesis 2 that man and woman become one flesh, they truly become one flesh through the intimacy of the marriage bed. Especially as Christians, we become one not only physically but also spiritually. When you with hold yourselves from each other for long periods of time out of anger or indifference… think of sex as just your duty or obligation to fulfill 2x’s a week… or as a tool to gain leverage over your spouse…, you are literally hurting not only your spouse but also yourself. You are two halves of a whole. You think you are hurting your spouse, but in reality, you are also harming yourself.

    Ladies, we are our husband’s helpmeet. If they need to have intimacy, it’s our privilege to meet their desires. Even if my physical desire is not met, it gives me great joy that he has met his, and vise versa. We have talked many times about this, and we both have come to the conclusion that it’s not about selfishly satisfying our own desires that gives us the greatest pleasure, but seeing that our spouse’s desire is met. Godly joining is not geared toward selfishness, but selflessness. The beauty of it is that we display the Lord’s attitude of servanthood even in this area.

  12. I guess I am just blessed that we can both “get the job done” for eachother in 10 minutes or less! If sex isn’t enjoyable ladies please speak with a knoweledgeable woman who can help you understand female anatomy and then you can share with your husband!

  13. Dear Lori
    Thank you so much for all your words of inspiration. I must confess that I used to be one of those women who would sneer at the idea of a submissive marriage, and I apologize for that.

    It took the almost breakup of my somewhat young marriage for me to see the light. My husband and I both had very stressful and competitive careers and we brought all that stress into every aspect of our marriage. I was terribly unhappy although I did not know why.

    But I have now since brought Christ into our marriage and it has been wonderful. I quit my job and am now a homemaker for my husband. I have taken to heart the teachings of a Christian marriage and no longer compete with my husband but recognize him as the head and support him in his role. This has made me become I think a better wife for him although a absolutely realize that I am in no way perfect. But I work on it each day.

    He has much more need of physical intimacy than I do but in my submissive role to him I now take pleasure in meeting his needs as much as I can. There are times when I just can not, but he is now the wonderful warm and understanding man that I had always hoped for in a husband.

    With him no longer needing to compete with me he has also opened up a side of him I never knew existed before. He treats me like his supermodel and I make sure I am that supermodel for him.

    I don’t think that ever other woman in my position will agree with my approach, but for me it has been the most wonderful transformation.

    I thank the Lord every day for placing him on my path and work hard at being a good wife for him and meeting his needs.

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