Husband’s Sexual Needs: Man Or Monster?

Husband's Sexual Needs Photoclub
Photoclub

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, my husband’s sexual needs are 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.”

Husband’s Sexual Needs for 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 sexual 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.

Ouch.

Would You Like a Me-Burger?

If you think of your husband’s sexual needs 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.

Discussing Wife’s and Husband’s Sexual Needs Together

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).

This 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. 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 Nancycanderson.com

IF YOU ARE MARRIED and you have additional tips you can share, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.

Print Post

Filed under: Sexual Issues

Join the Discussion

Please observe the following guidelines:

  • Try to be as positive as possible when you make a comment.
  • If there is name-calling, or profane language, it will be deleted.
  • The same goes with hurtful comments targeted at belittling others; we won't post them.
  • Recommendations for people to divorce will be edited out–that's a decision between them and God, not us.
  • If you have a criticism, please make it constructive.
  • Be mindful that this is an international ministry where cultural differences need to be considered.
  • Please honor the fact this is a Christ-centered web site.

We review all comments before posting them to reduce spam and offensive content.

Comments

496 responses to “Husband’s Sexual Needs: Man Or Monster?

  1. Married 21 years. My wife doesn’t want sex anymore but once each 7 weeks. Drives me insane with resentment. I have stopped asking or hinting for sex; rejection hurts too much. I will share this article with her this evening. When we talk about sex or rather lack of it she gets on the defense and her common remark is “I get it. It is all my fault” I expect this remark when she reads this article.

  2. This is so misogynist, so the wife just has to do whatever whenever? Im so sick of hearing the “man has needs” while the wifes needs do not matter whatsoever. Bring this article into the 21st century

    1. Yes, the wife has needs too. And the husband should work to meet those needs. That’s all a part of marrying. But this particular article is addressed to wives to explain a husband’s needs. There are many other articles posted on this web site that are addressed to husband that explain a wife’s needs. And then there are husbands who post under those articles that they do those things and yet their wives don’t try to meet their needs. What can we do?

      But then there are individual spouses that look at the articles that are addressed to them and they make positive changes because they never knew that info before. That is our hope–to help individual spouses and to help couples, as well. We’re sorry that this doesn’t meet your standard of acceptance. Just look elsewhere for the help you need. We sincerely hope you are able to find the info that works for you in your marriage partnership.

      1. Mira you have no idea what is like living with a person that makes you feel “cheap”, that makes you feel miserable and he acts like the most miserable person if you don’t give him his “treat” as if sex was the ONLY human way of getting happiness. Stop right there, you are not gonna tell me what it’s like feeling used, like a sex toy, you have no idea what it’s like living in a hell just because your childish husband feels that it is your fault that you don’t want sex.

        STOP right there because you have no idea what it is like letting that beast on top of you finish his sexual desires and you just have to turn yourself to the side of the bed sobbing what GOD is only watching. The more he demands for sex the more it’ll make you hate sex with him. So, now because men have needs I have to become a porn actress? Mira, I know tons of men that could spend long periods of time without sex and still act normal, not like a jerk. I am not a TOY, I am not a TOOL, I also have needs and I need to be RESPECTED. Period.

        1. Why is it that every time someone dares open his or her mouth to say something supportive of men, which is very rare, immediately some women must come along to write invariably lengthy comments talking about themselves? You just can’t stand to ever let men have a voice, can you? What does your questionable story have to do with this article? What, all men are garbage, any male who has a need must be an abuser, their needs don’t matter, you’re a ~*WOMAN*~, not a servant, etc.? Good for you! Well, take a number, because so are all other 7 BILLION people on this planet. GROOOWWW UUUUPPP!!!

          1. Bob, I think there are people, both men and women who are not married to right thinking reasonable people and therefore resent blog posts like this one. This type of blog post is probably not for Amarilis and she probably shouldn’t be reading it. We don’t know what is going on in her marriage, but obviously something is wrong. I don’t think she was talking about men in general, just her husband.

            I hope she seeks the help she needs and the outcome, whatever it is, is a good one. You say that whenever someone speaks on the side of men, there are always women who come along and just want to talk about themselves. The reverse is also true. In articles which explore the real and often heartbreaking reasons why some women have difficulty being intimate with their husbands, there are umpteen men in the comments who don’t seem to have absorbed one word and only seem concerned about the fact that they are not getting the sex they think they are entitled to. Blog posts are often read by the people they are not really aimed at.

          2. Bob, No, they can’t. They absolutely can’t stand for the focus and the “sympathy” and the sainthood and the spotlight to be off them.

          3. And you don’t understand why women don’t want to have sex with you???

    2. Where do you get this view? I was completely shocked to come across an article – written by a woman, no less – that communicated something I’ve been thinking for a long time, privately: namely, the author’s chocolate-in-a-briefcase analogy. With this and the rest of her piece, I can’t believe another human being actually gets it. She’s not even the same sex as me and she gets it!

      We’re not supposed to acknowledge that men are human beings who have needs that are just as legitimate as women’s. This article unexpectedly wrenched me from the ongoing suffocation of this mercilessly oppressive culture of she-woman man-hate and knowing I have no choice now but to return to my usual daily experience of asphyxiation in which nobody else “knows” (everyone’s pretending not to know) men are human — the shock of it makes me want to vomit, or cry.

      Respectfully, your comment underscores how mind-numbingly oblivious women are today. You don’t have a clue! How entitled you have become! How much better are your grandmothers, by and large. But, you men are far worse, because ignorance is largely forgivable, but cowardice and sloth are not. Stand up for yourselves, you weak fools! We must be the most pathetic generation of men in centuries. “Everywhere, at all times, men and women deserve each other.”

    3. This is selfish, Jamie, simple as that. No, a woman doesn’t HAVE to do this. That woman can be alone, also. Nobody is a misogynist simply because you don’t agree with them. Grow up.

  3. Amarilis, here is my response from a male perspective: While it is true that some men do go too far with controlling their God-given hormones as it sounds like your husband is, I think the poster’s point is 100% accurate and valid. The men that have strong sex drives and ‘could spend long periods of time without sex and still act normal, not like a jerk’ are good guys that do a great job of controlling or suppressing their feelings. They’re still feeling the rejection and resentment that the poster says her husband feels. They’re just sucking it up. It IS a normal hormonal need though. The snickers bar in the briefcase is spot on. As a man, I don’t have the option of satisfying my need with another person and masturbating is no different than satisfying hunger with a protein bar. You can’t eat protein bars every day.

    Look, some men are horrible. It’s true. Some express their emotions in an abusive way. Many men are irresponsible and don’t do what they should be doing as husbands and fathers. There is no excuse for that and this article was not written to address that. No one is suggesting a woman should reward a horrible man.

    However, so many women don’t understand how important sex is to men. It messes with a man’s brain, with their emotions, with how they feel about their spouse.

    Women have many needs that should be met as well, and they have to do with being supportive, equally sharing in responsibilities in the home and in parenting, and making them feel safe and secure (many other things as well). Because it’s important to her, I do it. I love her.

    I don’t feel the same need she does to complain about things without wanting a solution. I can go long periods of time without anyone cleaning the house or putting the laundry away and it’s fine. Women may read this and feel this is a sign of a lazy, irresponsible partner. Perhaps it is. However, why is sex not viewed the same way? Women don’t view it as a responsibility in the relationship and it makes men feel unloved and rejected much like women feel with unsupportive husbands. I understand that doesn’t make sense to many women, but it’s how many men feel.

    Women, if your man is doing what he should be doing as a husband and father and you are not regularly having sex … he is definitely feeling the feelings the poster has described in this article. If he’s stopped asking, that is definitely a problem. Just ask him if he wants to have sex tonight and see how he reacts. That will quickly tell you how much it weighs on him. Sex is a good, healthy, necessary thing in a marriage. God gave it to us as a gift. It’s not a bad thing.

    1. SO well said. Thank you so much for taking the time and effort to respond here. I realized years ago that my husband’s needs are different than mine. That doesn’t make mine right and his wrong or visa versa. And just because we don’t understand certain perspectives on our differing needs, it doesn’t mean that we should dismiss or ignore them.

      Yes, there are selfish, narcissistic husbands, just like there are selfish, narcissistic wives. This article is not addressing that issue. Those types of situations need to be addressed differently. This article addresses “normal” husband and wife sexual issues–trying to bring this need to the light of what happens pertaining to a “normal” husband’s sexual needs. We have other articles posted that address other angles to the needs of husbands and wives and what they need from each other.

      I look at a (good) husband’s sexual needs much like hunger. If your husband or wife is hungry, you don’t tell them to grow up and forget about it, and just go on without meeting that need for days or months or more. Sure, you can go without a meal or so here and there, if the circumstances warrant it. But eventually the nagging hunger can start to get to you. It’s a biological need. This is a physical, as well as an emotional need that most men (and many women) have. As husband and wife we pledge to love one another and look to meet each other’s legitimate needs. And this is a legitimate need, much as my need is to be close to my husband in talking together and connecting and working together in many different ways.

      This is all hard to explain. And it is a subject that is greatly misunderstood. But it comes down to putting one another’s needs before our own as we’re told to do in the Bible… and all the more so as husband and wife. Thanks again for giving your insight… always good to have different perspectives on this important issue.

      1. But does your husband really get that sarcastic (‘don’t you worry about me, you just live your life and I’ll wait right here?) on Thursday if he hasn’t had sex since Monday? Seriously?? I’d consider that a bit childish on his part to be honest, not the way a grown man should be behaving. Okay, he can desire sex and initiate it, but why get petulant and sarcastic about it? This would be on my list of ‘turn offs’, definitely.

        1. Jill, Would you consider me “petulant” if I resented her for depriving me for the majority of our nearly 28 year marriage? Or do I need to give it a little longer before I have your blessing to feel this way?

          1. Alan, I did mention a timescale in my comment and it was from Monday to Thursday (of the same week). It’s quite obvious that I wasn’t referring to long term sexless marriages.

    2. It amazes me how often we reassure women that yes, we respect their needs, only to have to go on reaffirming this again the next day, and the next day, and the day after that… ad infinitum, ad nauseam… And the topic is always “women’s needs” and “women’s wants”, and we are, again, constantly admitting to them that we understand and are already doing our level best, the vast majority of us, to take care of them (women) with oftentimes absolutely zero concern for our needs and zero respect for our humanity in return.

      Women today just never stop taking, and the younger they are, the worse their myopia and sense of entitlement. They just keep demanding and complaining and talking about themselves 24/7 and it just never ends. But it has to. We men have collectively done enough explaining ourselves and apologizing to women for being male these past decades; those who would still bully us for being male, they’re just idiots. They can seem to be acting in good faith when they are really just trying trying to deflect, redirect, change the topic, etc. I won’t name names.

    3. Married 35 years, and for the first ten years I made sure he got his “treat” regularly – 3 to 5 times a week. But about 6 months into the marriage, I started coming to the understanding that he regretted marrying. Cuddling, affection, and touch other than crude groping stopped completely. Any real communication stopped. Cutting remarks, complaints, and criticisms became the norm. He made it crystal clear that he is not in my corner. Everything is always my fault. He flatly refuses counseling of any sort. (Yes, I have gone on my own. He resents that he isn’t invited to come along so he can listen in to what is wrong with me.)

      After getting his jollies, he either rolls over and goes to sleep, or he will then say, “What do you want me to do?” I feel like I sold myself into slavery and unpaid prostitution. I feel incredibly stupid for believing in him enough to trust my heart to him. Oh, he also castigates me for being down on myself and having no self-confidence. You are surprised, husband? You are the mirror in which I see myself.

      I am nothing but an appliance to him, a sex-providing, meal-cooking, child-caring, cleaning, bill-paying, housekeeping, income-providing appliance. The ONLY time he shows any sort of affection is during church, which I am convinced he does for appearances so that people think he is this great guy.

      I cannot experience affection, flirting, tenderness, and male attention anywhere outside of marriage, either. Yet Biblically, does it not say that the husband and wife are not to deny EACH OTHER? Do I still provide him release? Yes, although after almost 35 years of being told to pound sand, suck it up, and oh, by the way, you are a big girl, go provide for yourself, the frequency of his release has dwindled down to maybe 1-2 dozen times a year. I get far less than that, and I get 100% of that by myself. My needs are not even a blip on his radar.

      It is lonely and miserable, but all that matters in this marriage is him. I sometimes pray that one of us (I don’t care if it is me) goes home soon. If God has called me to be nothing more than a literal base servant, then so be it. I try my best and give the rest to Him. If my husband passes first, I do not EVER wish to marry again. It would be FAR better to be alone then to be married to a man that shows in practical means how much he doesn’t love me. Yet it is still my responsibility to keep handing over that briefcase while I get to live shoved in a closet until he wants that candy bar. And getting the candy bar might blunt his typical harsh behavior for a few hours at best. I feel like a fool and a failure on a daily basis.

      1. WOW! I can see why you have the feelings you have. I would feel the same way. This is emotionally and sexually abusive, no doubt! Marah, there is a difference between making love and allowing yourself to be used like a piece of toilet paper. You have needs too and a loving spouse should be there for you. Obviously, this is not happening. I can’t tell you what to do. But I can say that this should not be allowed to continue. The husband is to love his wife as Christ loves His church, which is sacrificial.

        Perhaps you can talk confidentially to your pastor, and he can help you. God hates double faced people. That’s what Jesus told the Pharisees. He called them white “washed sepulchers” — “the outside of which pleases the eye, though inside they are full of dead men’s bones and of all that is unclean.” I don’t know if your pastor will talk to your husband, but he should. Your husband definitely needs to be called out on this and guided to “live a life of love” as we’re told to do in the Bible. Getting “jollies” filled and rolling over sure doesn’t fit that description.

        Please pray about all of this and see how God will guide you. Your husband needs to wake up (rather, he needs to be “shocked and awed” into waking up) into changing his approach to his sexual needs. Making love… yes… getting “jollies” and then rolling over… nope! If that’s his approach, then things need to change. I pray God will guide you into how you can safely let him know that this is not acceptable and won’t be tolerated. Spouses CAN change, but I’m not thinking your husband is motivated at this time. Why should he? It’s going his way. The sad thing is that you would bless his life beyond measure if he approached you (every day, all day) in a cherishing way. But he doesn’t realize it. I pray God will wake him up–for your sake and his. “May God grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans!” (Psalm 20:4)

  4. I’m almost 70 – my wife of 47 years is 66. I still have a big sex drive – she does not. We talked about it – I still look at her like 47 years ago – she is self conscious about here aging body – so I told her I would not push her to satisfy my fantasies – now I take care of myself out in the open and sometimes she lends a hand. We are totally open about it and respect each other’s desires

    1. I am 70 years old and sex has been a problem with us for the last 30 years. I have developed atherosclerosis and there is literally no blood flow to my pelvis or my extremities. For 20 years I have participated in sex but just 3 years ago I told him I could not go on. I dreaded it every time.

      For his part, sex was always a scripted affair, with no conversation or humor involved what so all, and I feel badly about ending it, for his sake, but it has been a weight lifted off me, not to dread his approach. I wish someone would tell me it’s okay to quit. He is 73. At least he can masturbate but there’s nothing for me.

  5. I know exactly what you mean. And I get resentful because of his meanness from not getting it. Thanks for helping me see “his” side of the mountain.

  6. I thank you. I’ve been married for 18 years now, with 4 kids. My wife is by the way ill, which worsens things. I’ve read that our marriage should comprehend taking care, passion and organization. We can match with the last one; I think I’m trying to take care of her and she does her best with me. Passion…

    During their staying in the hospital, I felt a greatly reduced amount of desire. When she’s with me… I yet love her, but I can’t even get nearer… I must conceal that I’m desiring her. Our sexual life together has always been our weakness, but in the last years it’s grown up as a nightmare. In the past I’ve tried everything to take out passion from her. It worked a couple of days, then my new trick would be unuseful.

    I’m even searching for some help in a language she won’t be able to understand (you can easily see that I’m not an English mother tongue). I’ve got no answers, but once in a while, I’ve felt it’s not completely my fault, me being a stupid sexual monster. She would never say this, but, as Rocky said, when I tried to cope with this trouble together, her answer would have been: “It’s all my fault.” But I don’t want to humble her; I want to love her! I feel so teenish, getting nearer to my fifties!

    That’s why I thank you. You solved no trouble of mine, but you helped me for a minute to understand that maybe my trouble is without a solution, but at least I’m not the trouble.

  7. What about the fact that sex is a need for women, too? I am a woman who wants sex daily and my husband was content with every couple of months (he now has Alzheimers and so we don’t have it at all). Why is it always assumed that only men want and need it?

    1. That is the school of thought about men. Plenty of women want sex too. When I was a teenager I had a married guy tell me “do your homework or someone will do it for you.” Pretty crude advice; I would not necessarily tell this to someone, makes you think that you can’t trust your spouse. But it let me know that women have desires too. Sorry about your situation with your husband.

    2. Because this problem is in 99% marriages, including my own, it’s the wife who doesn’t care about having sex with her husband. Whenever this topic comes up there’s always some women going, what about me; what about me? My husband never wants to have sex with me. Yes, there is always going to be a bizarre exception to the rule; and if your husband is depriving you of sex then welcome to the world of husbands and 90% of marriages. It sounds like you hate it. Well, we hate it too.

      I feel bad for you because there’s nothing you can do about it with no one to be angry with in a sexless marriage. Before we were married she couldn’t keep her hands off of me. The minute she got the ring on her finger she fulfilled all the stereotypes you hear that are absolutely true. I was the same guy 24 hours before we got married but somehow starting virtually in the first week of our marriage, sex became just another thing down on her list that doesn’t really matter to her.

      One thing you learn pretty quickly in a marriage is that most women really don’t place much of a priority on sex no matter how many times you make them orgasm, no matter how attentive you are, no matter how much communication, how in tune you are with each other meeting each other‘s emotional needs, nonsexual touch, doing things for each other. Sure it all leads to a little bit more sex for a time and then understandably it goes back to the default of once every eight weeks or so.

      In my experience women have a lot of needs in marriage and those needs are very important, and a lot of us husbands try our best to for fill those needs. But this idea that some perpetrate that somehow we’re not fulfilling her sexual needs? I think I speak for a huge amount of men in saying my wife’s sexual needs is for me to leave her alone–that’s her sexual needs. She needs to do anything besides have sex LOL. The funny thing is I don’t think I’ve even asked for or initiated sex with her in probably 18 months and yet she still comes to the bedroom half the time past midnight. I guess she’s hoping that I’m asleep even though I tried nothing with her for the longest time.

      We’ve had some really good conversations about this and she listens to me and I listen to her and we’ve actually laughed a few times about it and it’s rather pleasant and I always come away from a thinking something will change; but nothing ever really does. She’s tried different things over the years. I will do it every Friday etc. but I’m sure you’re rolling your eyes reading this because as you might’ve guessed that lasted about two weeks and was probably some of the most awkward moments we’ve ever had in our marriage.

      She’s also menopausal now and let me know that she “just doesn’t have any desire“. Before menopause she would seem to have some desire around her period every month. She’s gotten through most of the symptoms fine at this point and physically isn’t experiencing some of the more unpleasant things that menopause brought. But her sex drive, which was hardly existent pre-menopause, is now pretty much nonexistent. It’s a terrible thing to be in a long-term marriage in which you know for a fact and in your heart that your wife does not desire you.

      1. Well said, Ryan. Thanks for giving this side of things. You articulated it very well. I sympathize with those (like you) who find themselves in this situation. And yes, most often it’s the husbands that are the ones who are left wanting for this type of intimacy with their spouse. I confess that my husband was in that place for many years. I just didn’t get it. I understood my needs, but not his. I had a million excuses (many of which were legitimate), but when you’re the one who is left in a sexless marriage and you’re wondering what happened, why, why, why, and all the “excuses” leave you in the same place–left wanting, it’s painful, no doubt.

        Eventually, I woke up. Previously, I wanted my husband to meet my needs, but I didn’t understand why this was a “legitimate” need of his. After all, if I didn’t want it (for whatever reason) couldn’t he just understand and move on? I rationalized that I was a loving, giving wife in so many other ways. Wasn’t this enough? Actually, no! I became the “gatekeeper” of something that my husband needed. Not only did I neglect this very real need of his, I neglected what God says in the Bible:

        “The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and like-wise the wife to her husband. The wife’s body does not belong to her alone but also to her husband. In the same way, the husband’s body does not belong to him alone but also to his wife. Do not deprive each other except by mutual consent and for a time so that you may devote yourselves to prayer. Then come together again so that Satan will not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.” (1 Corinthians 7:3-5)

        I came to realize and face up to this truth eventually. (Somehow I overlooked it previously.) I now realize that I’m wired differently than my husband; he’s wired differently than me, and as a result, our needs are different–not right, not wrong… just different. And I needed to recognize that. I rationalized my “excuses” and my husband rationalized his “excuses” but all it did was leave us both frustrated in different ways. And this is not good, no matter which way you look at it.

        Yes, there are sometimes when one spouse or the other, or both are entirely insensitive to meeting each other’s needs. There are some spouses that are clueless. And some spouses are trying to get their marriage partner do things that would “defile” the marriage bed. And that complicates all of this. But that’s the exception, rather than what normally happens. But when it’s just a matter of “I don’t want to” and to never (or hardly ever–with many times years passing) without meeting the other’s sexual needs… that’s not good at all.

        Ryan, there are so many things I want to tell husbands (and some wives) who are in this place. I have said it in several articles, such as: https://marriagemissions.com/when-childhood-sexual-abuse-affects-marriage-intimacy/. But I also want to encourage you not to give up. I can well appreciate why you would want to. But some of us DO wake up. My husband was loving, patient (although sometimes he understandably lost his patience), but he remained faithful to me, kept loving me, romancing me, and trusted God to help him with this extraordinarily difficult situation. And now, he is all smiles. He didn’t compromise his, and most importantly God’s values, and he and we are in a good place in meeting each other’s intimacy (and other) needs.

        I pray your wife wakes up. She’s probably a very good woman–clueless (as I was), on this issue, but still a good woman in other ways. Please don’t let all of this discolor your views of her. I pray for her, and I pray for you. “And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ —to the glory and praise of God.” (Philippians 1:9-11)

  8. Just look at the hateful, selfish comments from the women. It’s not all about you; he has needs that God has given you responsibility to meet as well. And American women wonder why men are no longer concerned about marriage or relationships; it’s because of their self-centered, entitled attitude.

    1. Jason, Oh but it IS all about them! Just take a look at divorce courts, family courts, custody settlements, the #metoo movement, etc etc ad libitum et nauseum; it’s the Jezebel spirit and it has been aided and abetted by the church for YEARS.

  9. I love this article. Thank you. This is us for sure. The sugar craving scenario really helped me see my husbands side, b/c I could see that actually happening and yes I would be pissed. We have been married 14yrs (7 kids). He can be hurtful when he says I don’t love him or I only need him for his money b/c I rarely initiate sex. I do love him. I don’t reject him very often, but he does get really offended when I do. I know this is his biggest issue cuz he is always telling me he needs it and that I hate him if I say no (I never really understood). I can help this for sure.

    1. Thanks for sharing this. This is encouraging for us too. This article would have helped me many years ago if I would have read it at that time. Unfortunately, we had to learn much later than we had to. But at least we/I did. And I’m so glad this is helpful for you to perhaps grow closer in understanding and in intimacy. This type of understanding sure has helped us! I pray that for you too. :)

    2. It depends on how often he wants it though. Sometimes her needs might be a bit less of his need. Compromise. He won’t explode.

    3. To be honest, I thought the sugar craving scenario was ridiculous and far too simplified. But then again, I dislike most analogies on blog posts about sex. I find them confusing and unhelpful, just tell it straight without all the story telling shenanigins. I’ve read this article a couple of times now and I actually think it’s quite a poor example.

  10. I am a couples therapist who often works with couples in sexual issues and how that affects the relationship in a greater sense. I am distressed reading this article, because it validates abusive behavior. The definition of abusive behavior is “aggressive, coercive or controlling, destructive, harassing, intimidating, isolating, or threatening”. A man being a “monster” to his partner unless she gives him what he wants sexually, is coercive, intimidating, and isolating. It sets up a premise that a woman’s body is not under her control. As a therapist I can confirm that men often conflate sexual attention with love and worthiness. But this does not justify abusive behavior. There are many other options for expressing a desire to feel loved and cared for, such as expressing these feelings in a vulnerable, non blaming way, educating your partner on your love language, getting affirmative consent, and going to couple counseling.

    1. This is a great article and is spot on with most of the country. What you speak about is not reality and by the time you mold your patients into what you think they should be it may be too late. We need to take the situation at hand, understand, find a solution, not mold people into something that came out of a book or college class that is so far from reality; its usless. Great article, well written. My wife and I laugh as we read it and couldn’t agree more to its contents. Thank you.

  11. This isn’t politically correct, but sometimes in relationships, you have to suck it up and take one for the team. He might not feel like getting out the ladder and putting a few displaced shingles back onto the roof after a bad storm has ripped them off, but he does it. She might not feel like doing laundry, but she does it. He might not feel like hearing her go on and on about the trivial happenings of her day, but he at least puts up a polite pretense of being interested. She is uninterested in listening to him go on and on about an upcoming football game, but she at least pretends to care. The way I see it, sex is like that too — and on both sides. Sometimes, he’s going to be in the mood and she’s not. Sometimes, the opposite is true. Either way, if you want a peaceful relationship, sometimes you have to just suck it up and take one for the team.

    It only becomes a problem when one person does most of the ‘sucking it up’ in the relationship, and the other person does little or none. This is when resentment, a sense of being exploited or taken for granted — and yes, often eventual affairs and divorces as well — begins.

    1. Thank you Hazel for being blunt here. You’re right; this isn’t politically correct, but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t true. It’s very true. We appreciate you for saying it.

    2. Good point, I have always said that a few minutes of sex from my wife keeps my heart and mind at “home”. We are 60, she is on HRT, somedays her sex drive is thru the roof. We are FINALLY empty nesters (WHOOO HOOO!!) so we have a little more freedom.

      1. A few minutes? Nope, I’d just be getting started after a few minutes. That’d be a sure way to leave me unsatisfied.

  12. My husband doesn’t mind going a month without sex. He prefers to masturbate because it’s easier and doesn’t require any “work.”

    1. L, unless you have a good understanding, you may want to be a little more part of this. More than once per month…

  13. You are basically putting the responsibility for a man’s sexual release on the woman every three or four days. What happened to bodily autonomy? Does she really need another chore? Your suggestions might seem like an act of love, but a man’s sex drive is unfair to put on anyone else. A man can masturbate if he needs to. He can track and monitor his mood swings and put something in place to deal with them on his own. Women do this, so why not men? Trust me, you will wear yourself out trying to appease a man’s hormonal cycle of it even works. How about we talk about male hormones instead and how to help them help themselves rather than enabling their codependency.

    1. I couldn’t agree more. My husband of 15 years has suddenly decided that he wants fantasies. He first started with complaining about my performance, which was 4 times a week. Then he started demanding that I should want to participate in his fantasies.

      I was raised Christian and hold on to those beliefs, yet he throws a fit if I refuse to talk nasty, and even throws a fit because I’m not comfortable pretending there is another woman with us when we have sex. He says these are normal requests from husbands to wives. He says I’m not normal getting so upset about his fantasy. I’m ready to seek help, because something is wrong with me or him.

      1. Again, I will say this because it’s so important… hold to your moral principles. These are not “normal” requests your husband is making of you from a Christian standpoint. Your husband should not be asking you to feed his fantasies of making love to someone else when he is making love to you (or any other time). He has stepped over the line of what is right and what is wrong. His fantasies are to involve making love to you–being generous in making sure your needs are met. In doing so, you will be all the more motivated to be generous with him to please him — but NOT as far as inviting another woman into your marriage bed mentally or physically.

        I think that Dave Willis sums it up well: “Don’t just be physically monogamous; be mentally monogamous, as well. True intimacy begins in the heart and the mind—not in the bedroom. When you’re acting out sexual fantasy apart from your spouse, it’s an act of mental infidelity. All true intimacy and all infidelity begins in the mind. If your eyes and your thoughts are wandering away from your spouse, then your heart is going to follow. Two thousand years ago, Jesus taught that ‘…to look at a woman lustfully is to commit adultery with her in your heart.‘ Don’t just be physically monogamous. Strive to be mentally monogamous.”

  14. Okay, I get it; men need sex. But how about when they have told you that you are like making love to a stick? What about when your husband expects you to talk the most nasty things while you give him a bj, and pretend he is with another woman, and have you explain all the things he is doing to this imaginary woman? Even after you say you aren’t into his fantasy, he gets mad and says, it’s just a fantasy; give me at least my fantasy. Other women would never have a problem with what I want.

    So I don’t know; how many women are okay with pretending vocally that their husbands are with another woman while performing sex???

    1. I’m 46 and always had a higher drive than my husband. From ages 16 to 46 (yes we had sex before marriage) I ALWAYS initiated and chased him for sex and I got really angry when he wouldn’t provide it to me.

      The more he backed away, the more I wanted him. So I recently stopped asking for it, in fact even rejected him several times. He is now the frustrated partner and feels unloved. Men of this page, try rejecting your wives for at least 6 months then start making yourself look physically better (weight loss/muscles whatever you know she likes). Watch what happens.

    2. Kay, Please hold to your ground of not fanning the flames of your husband’s fantasies of dirty talk that you’re uncomfortable with, and helping him to fantasize that he is with another woman. That is flat out adultery of the mind. Some can argue that it’s better than physical adultery, but that’s not true. A spouse wants exclusivity in their intimate relationship. Otherwise, why get married? Also, Jesus said don’t condone it either. He said: “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

      If your husband is fantasizing that he is with another woman, he is committing adultery in his mind and in his heart. And you sure don’t want to contribute to that. Sure, he CAN find other women that wouldn’t have a problem with that. But what kind of supportive argument is that? He can find other women that would have sex with him even though he’s marriage. He can also find women who would have no problem having sex with animals, with crowds of guys, with children, with all kinds of things and in all kinds of situations. That’s a lame argument! Just because other people do these things, it doesn’t condone us doing them. In Noah’s day “everybody else was doing it” but everyone else was wrong. If everyone else steals, that doesn’t give us permission to do so. And the list goes on. What’s wrong is wrong no matter how many other people do it.

      I’m all for a husband and wife having a GREAT sex life together. We should. But making love to our spouse should not include anyone else–within our minds or physically. Making love or having sex with our spouse is not all about the Big “O” — making it easy so you can achieve an orgasm. That’s just one part of it. It’s about the REALLY Big “O” — Oneness. As we make love we are to feel closer and more loving towards each other. We are sharing exclusivity. It’s all about building up our Oneness in mind and body–with each other with God’s blessing.

      If your husband can’t make love to you and you alone with no other people involved–real or imagined, then this is problematic, to say the least. And for him to call you a “stick” and other names sure doesn’t make you want to make love to him. He needs to know that. Plus, having him fantasize about being with someone else as you are making love to him is horrible. He is minimizing you in his heart and mind and is substituting you with someone else on the most intimate level. He is not supposed to fantasize about anyone else but you. You are his wife–not these other fantasy women. This certainly does not build your intimacy as a married couple.

      So no! No! This is wrong–no matter how much he tries to persuade you with his arguments. Wrong is wrong–no matter what he or anyone else says. Let him know that you are willing to make love to him. You are willing to knock his socks off in bed. But your marital bed is not to be defiled by bringing other women into it physically, vocally, image-wise or any other way. Making love is a two-way communication, and you can’t live with this type of adulterous communication. If he wants to make love to you–it is to you, and you alone. Please stand your ground on this. … I hope you will.