Phillip: “What are you doing?”
Janet: “What do you mean, ‘what am I doing?’ I’m sitting next to you on the couch as we watch TV.”
Phillip: “But you’re also putting your arm around me.”
Janet: *smiling* “Oh yeah. I thought I’d do that, too.”
Phillip: “I can’t even remember when the last time you’ve done that was. What’s the occasion?”
Janet: “No special occasion. I just wanted to be close to you. That’s all.”
Phillip: “Well, I don’t want to offend you or anything. But I think I’d rather have more room to stretch out.”
Janet: “Well, I don’t want to offend you or anything, but I thought maybe I’d turn off the TV and try to turn you on, instead.”
Phillip: “Sorry to say…but that’s just not going to happen.”
Janet: *playfully* “What? You don’t think I can fulfill that goal?”
Phillip: “It’s not that. I’m saying…I guess I don’t want you to try.”
Janet: “Why not?”
Phillip: “I’m not sure why. Now, can we just get back to the movie?”
Janet: *turns TV off* “No, we can’t. We obviously need to talk about this.”
Phillip: “About what?”
Janet: “About the fact that we haven’t had sex more than 1 time in the past 3 months. In fact, we’ve rarely had sex at all the past year. It’s gone way down, since…”
Phillip: “Since what?”
Janet: “Since you were ill. That’s it. We had a long break when you had all those health problems, and we never recovered.”
Janet: “Yeah. Recovered. You did…at least physically. But we didn’t.”
During the first five years of our marriage, Megan and I enjoyed life to the full. We had no children and we spent vast amounts of time with one another. We learned a lot about one another during that season in life, but as in every area of life, this season didn’t last.
Since that time we’ve become parents to two beautiful little girls. Careers have changed. Work hours have, too. Times of sickness have invaded our lives. Depression. Hard struggles in our extended family. Other struggles in our immediate one. Yet through it all we’ve come to understand that various seasons in life will happen, and we’ve taken opportunity to not allow them to hinder our marriage in any way.
Our guess is we’re not alone. You’ve also experienced difficult seasons of illness, depression, career changes and so on, too. If you don’t take the time to think through and understand these seasons, some of them may hinder your marriage and sex life in profound ways. But if you DO take the opportunity to think through and understand these seasons, you’ll learn a great deal about sexual freedom. In fact, here are few things to consider when different seasons come your way:
You are free to please your spouse:
When your spouse is struggling with a pretty significant illness, it’s still quite likely you are able to sexually arouse and please him/her. Whether it’s recent surgery, a broken limb or back problems, it’s still quite possible for you to experience full-blown intercourse. Simply work together to find a position that is relaxing for them yet gives you full control of your time together. Openly talk through what’s working and what isn’t, and do you best to connect as often as possible. If full intercourse isn’t a possibility, then strongly consider taking opportunities to orally stimulate him/her to climax.
In seasons such as this, perhaps the most important thing to remember is that one of your primary roles in marriage is to serve your spouse. Men have a responsibility to serve their wife by loving, caring and providing for them. And men have a responsibility to serve their wife sexually as well. Women share an equal responsibility. As the Scriptures say:
2 Corinthians 7:3-4 (NLT)
3 The husband should fulfill his wife’s sexual needs, and the wife should fulfill her husband’s needs. 4 The wife gives authority over her body to her husband, and the husband gives authority over his body to his wife.
5 Do not deprive each other of sexual relations, unless you both agree to refrain from sexual intimacy for a limited time so you can give yourselves more completely to prayer. Afterward, you should come together again so that Satan won’t be able to tempt you because of your lack of self-control.
You are free to do it morning, noon, or night:
It seems odd that we even need to say this, but we feel we must. If something like a career change or work hours is hindering your sex life, remember that sex doesn’t need to only occur after dark in a locked bedroom. You can wake up a little early and enjoy a quick romp in the shower. Once a week you can take a long lunch break and connect at home. Husband, you can rent a hotel for a day and meet her there after meeting a business client there for lunch. Wives, you can walk into his study/den and lock the door behind you and give him a lap dance he’ll never forget. Just remember that pure sexual freedom frees you from engaging sexually in the same place at the same time in the same way every single time you connect.
You are free to get help:
Far too many marriages today are struggling, and far too many of those are too proud to ask for help. Men, for the most part, are embarrassed to admit to a pastor or counselor that their marriage isn’t going so well. (Yes, we acknowledge some women experience embarrassment and pride, too.) This embarrassment often leads to a very unsatisfying marriage. So our advice to you, is to get help. It never hurts to have a trustworthy pastor or counselor talk through your marriage and sex life with you. In fact, couples who have a rough patch yet agree to work on it together often have a longer, more fulfilling marriage than couples who (in pride) agree to stay together but not seek help.
In short, seasons will come and seasons will go. And in order to maintain sexual fulfillment throughout the entirety of your marriage, you need to remember that you have a responsibility to sexually please your spouse and that responsibility can be fulfilled in a variety of ways. And if you struggle to fulfill that responsibility – if you struggle to get on the same page in any area of your marriage – seeking help doesn’t make you a failure in any way. In fact, seeking help makes you a hero, showing that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to fight for the sanctity of marriage.
This is Part 4 in our series on Five Ways to Sustain Sexual Freedom in Marriage. Additional posts in the series can be found at the links below.
Feel free to answer one/all of the following questions in the comments below, or discuss them with your spouse.
- What is the most difficult ‘season’ you have gone through in your marriage? Did it have a negative sexual impact?
- What is another “you are free to __________” point you think couples should remember when experiencing different seasons?
- Discuss with your spouse: If there’s just one thing I could do this week to serve you in a sexual way, what would it be?