After 27 years of marriage, I’m just beginning to understand my husband’s sexual needs.
I DO know that his need for sexual contact is much stronger than mine. While I would be thrilled, with a romantic rendezvous about twice a month, his need is more intense.
I noticed a pattern: the longer he went without sexual intimacy, the more irritable he became. On the days when we made love, Ron was mellow and easygoing about things that might normally have bothered him. During the day after, he was still patient, kind, and cuddly as a six-foot teddy bear. On the third day after our “session”, he would start to get restless and make sarcastic comments like, ”Don’t worry about me. You just live your life and I’ll wait here.”
Then, if we hadn’t “played doctor” in four days, the veins in his eyes would get red and bulgy and his upper lip would start to twitch. If we went into the fifth day, he’d start to gnaw on the sofa.
The longer he went without release, the more pressurized —that is, grumpy —he became. If we ever went a whole week without sex, it’s as if his skin would turn green, black bolts would pop out of his neck, and he would morph into Franken-Husband.
Ladies, if you aren’t “taking care of business” a couple times a week, you may be creating your own monster.
Ron and I talked about my theory, and he agreed with it. He said, “After several days without sex, I start to feel like you don’t care about me. It isn’t a conscious decision, but my resentment just starts to build and keeps getting worse each day that you ignore or reject me.”
Men Need Release
Then, I did some research and it confirmed our experience. Men’s need for sexual release is based on actual physical, hormonal needs. Many studies agree that because of sperm production, natural testosterone, and other factors, men naturally want sexual release about every seventy-two hours, or three days.
Men need sexual contact. God designed them that way. It’s not bad or dirty or perverted, it just is. If a wife makes an effort to meet her husband’s needs, he’ll be more willing to meet hers. Sex is number one on Ron’s priority list and approximately number forty-seven on mine, but I have learned to honor its importance to him.
You Are Sex-Driving Me Crazy!
I don’t fully understand the hormonal, physical male sex drive, but I do know a thing or two about the female hormone cycles. Ladies, have you ever gone on a PMS-driven mission called “Gotta have chocolate, or someone’s gonna die?” I have. I once ransacked every drawer in my son’s room looking for last year’s semi-sweet Easter Bunny’s ear.
I’ve clawed through the kitchen cupboards like [the movie character] Indiana Jones on a quest, looking for a little golden bag containing stale chocolate chips. As I ripped it open and blissfully inhaled the aroma, my pulse reacted as if I’d just found the necklace that the old lady threw off the Titanic.
Now imagine that you’re on a take-no-prisoners chocolate chase and your husband has a Snickers bar in his locked briefcase —but he won’t give you the key. He has the capability to relieve your hormonal obsession, but he refuses. How would you feel about him? Would you think that he was selfish? Mean? Cruel?
Ron says that’s how a man feels when his wife rejects his sexual needs.
Would You Like a Me-Burger?
If you think of a man’s sexual need as a hunger, his desire can be satisfied in many different ways. Each “feeding” does not have to be a banquet. His wife could “feed the need” with a snack, a meal, or a feast.
Often, a quick snack will satisfy his appetite. (Use your imagination here) Other times, he’ll be thrilled to sit down (lie down) for a simple meal. On special occasions, however, get out the good china (satin sheets), send the children to Grandma’s house, and flambé a fabulous feast.
Ladies, next time your husband gets hungry for you and you’re too tired to prepare a banquet, ask him, “How about a quick snack?” He’ll probably be thrilled that you’re not rejecting him, and you’ll be able to meet his need without resenting it.
Don’t Make Him Beg
Bambi had four children in five years. She went from being a sex kitten to a fat cat who craved catnaps. She lost all interest in sex and was so tired that she had a “headache” for most of the next decade. When her husband tried to get frisky, she’d often arch her back and hiss, “You must be kidding!” He wasn’t. She refused him so many times that he quit asking. Not surprisingly, they’re now divorced and in the middle of a bitter custody battle over the kittens.
Men have fragile egos in this area and, in order to avoid rejection, they may stop pursuing their wives. Ladies, if your husband isn’t asking anymore, immediately sprint into a lingerie shop. I mean now, this minute! March in there, and buy a little —and I mean little —something. Then call your hubby and say, “I’m cooking up something special for dinner —hurry home!”
Unless your husband is a eunuch, he has sexual needs. Do your best to satisfy them.
“But I’m Embarrassed”
I don’t know why, but men are stimulated by visual cues. That’s why they’re much more likely to look at pornography than women are.
That’s also why they like to make love with the lights on. I’d prefer the flattering glow of a single votive candle, but Ron wants to use the same wattage a dentist uses for a root canal. So we have a conflict.
We’ve been married for 27 years and my body is almost fifty years old, and it’s showing signs of wear. I think of it as a comfy sofa: lumpy, frayed, and a little saggy. I try to avoid full-length mirrors, but my hubby still wants to see me —and that’s a good thing.
Several years ago, we discovered a wonderful compromise: we use a red or pink light bulb in the lamp next to our bed. I know it sounds crazy, but don’t knock it until you’ve tried it. The rosy glow diminishes most flaws, wrinkles, and stretch marks. You can buy these magic bulbs at most larger grocery stores for less than five dollars.
Ideally, you should be at a place in your marriage where you can ask each other, “Are you happy with our sex life?” If one of you is not, ask, “Why not?” As a married couple, it’s vital that you are able to discuss your needs openly and honestly. If it’s important to one of you, it needs to be important to both of you.
Metaphorically speaking, if the wife waters the husband and the husband waters the wife, they will both be satisfied. “Drink water from your own well —share your love only with your wife [husband]” (Proverbs 5:15 NLT).
The above article is adapted from the book, Avoiding the Greener Grass Syndrome, written by Nancy C Anderson, published by Kregel Publications. It was written by Nancy, who strayed to the other side of the marital fence —and returned to find forgiveness and restoration. Based on the principle that the grass is always greener where it’s watered, this book focuses on how to grow a beautiful marriage in your own backyard by establishing protective “hedges” around it. Author Nancy C Anderson and her husband Ron, speak nationally to couples’ groups of all denominations. They share their message of hope and restoration with tenderness and humor. If you live in the United States and would like for them to speak with your group please contact them at www.RonAndNancyAnderson.com. You may also want to visit their blog at www.joyfulmarriage.blogspot.com.
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