“So hon…um…you think…uh…maybe later…um…after the kids go to bed…you might…uh….want to…you know…if you feel like it…have sex?”

My wife and I were listening to “The Stupendous Marriage Show” the other day, and Stu and Lisa were talking about how sometimes a guy will talk himself out of asking his wife for sex, based off of what he sees her doing at the time, that in his mind, make his chances of hearing a “yes”, much lower. In other words, we’re too scared to ask.

Here’s the thing though guys! Us NOT asking, and then being upset that she didn’t “read our minds” and “just know” that we need sex that night, is very frustrating to our wives! If we would just “man up” and ask her, she could at least start turning her mind in that direction, and be much more willing later to respond positively.

What I’m trying to get across here, is that we may be missing out on a lot of “sack time” with our wives, simply due to us being to afraid to ask. Yes, nothing strikes fear into the heart of a man like asking his wife for sex, I get it. But what if we got over the whole “I take it personally, and hate rejection” part, and just be open and honest about it and say “hey hon, would you be up for sex tonight? I’ve really been thinking about you lately”. I’ve talked to a lot of wives who have told me they would love it if their husbands would just come out and ASK when he needs it, instead of “not wanting to bother her”, and ending up frustrated, or worse, turning to porn or something else for release. And I know you’re thinking “yeah, this all sounds great, but you don’t know my wife. She would move into the garage if I asked her every time I needed sex“. Really? How would you know? Have you tried it?

What we fail to understand as men a lot of times, is that our wives REALLY WANT to be there for us sexually most of the time. Sure, there are times when they can’t respond quite like we were hoping, but they still DESIRE to be that help mate that God created them to be, but too many times we don’t LET them. We don’t even give them the chance. We say to ourselves “oh, I don’t want to bug her, she’s going to think I’m some kind of sex freak or something”, instead of giving her the chance to even think it over! And let’s be real here guys, most of the root issue here is we’re afraid to not just ask, but to ADMIT we NEED her. We apply the “I’m a man, and I don’t need anybody” theory to our sex lives, and I’m telling you, it’s hurting our marriages! Heaven forbid we as men admit we “depend on” someone! Instead we ask, get rejected a couple of times, and then withdraw and play the “whatever, It doesn’t really matter anyway” card, instead of working through it together, explaining to our wives how much we NEED (yes, need is not a bad word) to connect to them this way, and allowing them to fulfill the role that God has given them – the role that no other woman in the world can fill  if we would just give them the chance.

So next time you’re arguing with yourself about if you should or shouldn’t ask your wife for sex tonight, slap yourself around a little bit, pull up your “man pants”, realize your wife is on your side (not laughing evilly like we have it in our heads), and honestly ask her! You might just be blown away by how many times you’ve missed out, simply for lack of asking. Don’t let your pride and fear of rejection, get in the way of the sex life God designed you to have with your wife. 

    • Vince
    • August 26th, 2012

    But why is it that over 90% of the time the guy has to ask AT ALL?! Guys don’t mind taking the lead and initiating and such but the problem is deeper than simply asking with the possibility of getting turned down. It’s just like foreplay for a guy. IF her thoughts and actions display that she is not being affectionate or easy to get along with then it makes it crazy difficult for the guy to “ask” or as I put it “BEG”. No one enjoys begging and we feel less masculine being forced into the “begging” mode.

    • While I believe that God designed the man to be the initiator most of the time, there are times of the month when she may be putting out signals that are “less than encouraging” when you are thinking of asking her. I think it really comes back to communicating about it, instead of having a “fine! I’ll just go work in the garage!” attitude about it. Be loving, share your heart, and be able to read your wife enough to know when she may be going through the time of the month when her hormones may be affecting her more than she would like.

      Now I’m not talking all the responsibility off the wives here, she plays a huge part too, and if she doesn’t fully desire to meet her husband’s sexual needs, there’s nothing you’re going to do that will change that. It has to start with both of you WANTING to have a more than average sex life – and I guess I was addressing this post to couples that have at least made it to that point. Both parties have to be willing to give and sacrifice, or sex will only be one of many issues you will be have having in your marriage.

  1. Sounds great. But the problem is asking multiple times and getting shot down multiple times ends up being very difficult to recover from.

    • Very true. Trust me, I’ve been there. But somehow we have to move past the rejection we feel, realize that it’s not personal, she just isn’t interested at the time, and try again later. Like I mentioned previously, this is assuming that the wife has made a decision to be there for her husband sexually, even when it’s hard. If she hasn’t, or is finding this hard, stay tuned for a post my wife is working on over at Mission:Wife, that is going to more that challenge the wives this way.

    • rob
    • August 27th, 2012

    missionhusband :
    . But somehow we have to move past the rejection we feel,

    And just what is this “somehow” when rejection is the norm for 25 -30 years. Just don’t take it personal. Yea right, that is really easy.

    • Rob,

      I understand your pain. Really. My wife hasn’t always been this way. But whether you want to admit it or not, at some point you gave up. You quit. You decided that it was no longer worth it, and you were just going to accept it as normal. If I had to guess, it was probably around year 3 or 4. Maybe not even that long. Instead of sitting down with your wife, taking her hand, looking her in the eye, and pouring your heart out and letting her know how sex means so much more to you than just sex. You need it to feel loved, you need it to feel confident, you need it to feel appreciated and wanted. You desperately want to have that connection with her. Instead, you probably tried to make it obvious that you needed it, she missed all you cues for years, and then you just gave up. Am I anywhere close? If so, you’re just like me and most every other guy that has ever gotten married. I’m sorry for what you’re feeling and where your sex life is right now. But sometimes it’s easier to blame it on our wives, and forget we had a bigger part to play in it than we like to admit.

      There is still hope though! Don’t give up! If God can bring healing to marriages that have been through affairs, lies, separation, abuse, etc – He can restore your sex life! Sit down with your wife and start with “there are alot of things I’ve done wrong, and I want to bring our marriage up to where it should be”. You might be surprised at where it leads!

    • Dave
    • August 28th, 2012

    This has been an interesting dynamic in my own case. In the early days, sex was mostly “automatic” so there really wasn’t a conscious “Would you like to have sex tonight?” As sexual frequency dies out, I struggled with, “should I ask.” “Is it selfish to ask?” “How much frustration/resentment should I really be allowed to feel when rejected?” and so on.

    Fast forward several years, after it has degenerated into a sexless marriage, and figuring out how to ask for sex and having the courage to ask for it is a significant challenge to overcome.

    One thing I worry about with this “just ask” is how to make it not nagging. When it’s been several months since the last time she said yes, you feel like asking every day, which can just turn into a broken record. Or it turns into “I’m ready when you are” throwing the ball exclusively into her court.

    What do you think of non-verbal ways of communicating this? I’ve heard a few suggestions like putting a marble in a bowl when you are in the mood, then she can do something with that marble to communicate back, yes, no, maybe. Some people seem to feel that this always has to be a verbal request (with the potential for immediate rejection), but some might find it easier to do if it is non-verbal in such a way that she doesn’t have to respond immediately.

    An added challenge I find is that, as I get older, I find that, even though emotionally I’m willing and able, my body doesn’t always respond with as much enthusiasm. It should be no mistake that performance anxiety becomes a negative feedback loop that can be a real problem, that feels even more frustrating if she’s going to say yes only once a quarter and your own body betrays you that once.

    • V
    • August 28th, 2012

    Not to interupt Dave’s post,
    but to reply to Mission Husband’s last reply:
    I’ve been married for nearing 26 years. It hasn’t changed NO MATTER WHAT I DO. Believe me, I’ve cleaned house constantly top to bottom while working full time, cooking dinner every night, going to school, and lead singer in a band. NOTHING in return but callouseness.
    I’ve read countless articles and hopes of sharing and understanding – NOTHING in return.
    I’ve written letters that pained me to write – and still NOTHING!
    I’ve argued. I’ve debated. I’ve lost sleep for days on end – NOTHING!
    The only thing I want to do at this point is leave because I’m too weary to keep this up.
    But to direct us in saying we need to simply have a heart-to-heart coversation because she probably just doesn’t know???
    Dude, you have stated the obvious to those that are still married during their first 5 years (maybe). The rest of us just need serious counseling I guess because if it wasn’t for children I don’t see how my mind could handle the insanity from doing the same thing over and over all while hoping for better results from years of negativity, abuse, and neglect.

    I know I speak for most men who are going through this.

    • V –

      Is “acts of service” your wife’s love language? If not, you could clean the house until you’re blue in the face, and it wouldn’t do any good. If her love language is “time”, things you do for her, don’t matter to her one bit. She may think it’s cool that you clean, but it’s not connecting to her.

      How long has it been since you took her on a weekend away? How about even 30 minutes at night to listen to her, and I mean really listen?

      Have you been a student of her? Figured out what hits her buttons, and what doesn’t? What she likes both in bed and out? Are you concerned about her pleasure just as much as yours?

      Do you have kids? Does she stay home with them? How many nights away with the band do you have, while she’s staying home with the kids? Does she feel like you care about how much time you spend with her?

      It’s easy to point the finger at our wives, but so many times there are things that we are shooting ourselves in the foot with, instead of making it easier for her to respond to us.

      There’s always hope. Even after 25 years. Don’t give up, it’s not worth it, because when you find someone else, 25 years later you’ll be writing the comment, still wondering why you’re not getting any.

    • Dennis
    • September 2nd, 2012

    If you have the “I need sex” talk and she downplays it or doesn’t care, get help now – it will never get better on its own!!!!

    • Anon
    • September 2nd, 2012

    Christian men often get the message to “do more, help more, be nicer, cater to her needs more” so their wives will want to have sex more. I sometimes wonder if doing all of that creates a situation where she sees her husband as a male version of a sister/friend/maid/nanny. This is not to say that a husband shouldn’t be nice, treat his wife well, help with the kids, etc. But what if he is losing how to be a man somewhere along the way? If that’s the case, his wife is not going to be attracted to him, no matter what. What if he tried this instead? Made a clear statement to his wife that he needs to have a regular, meaningful sexual relationship with her. Began working on masculine things in his life – working out, getting in shape, losing weight, improving his career if needed, pursuing a male hobby or activity, being a father to his kids but not their nanny, doing the things that a man should do to care for his home (but not being the maid/housekeeper for his family). In other words, focus on becoming the kind of man that women are attracted to, the man that his wife was probably attracted to in the first place? I think it’s worth a shot. Certainly better than continuing to beg for sex. Athol Kay says a lot about this at Married Man Sex Life, although Christians need to adapt his approach to fit their beliefs.

    • Bert
    • September 2nd, 2012

    I agree with Anon…Christ was not feminine or passive…he was compassionate and caring….He was not the norm..if anything was a rebel for the time…He hung out with tax collectors and sinners…..He was a carpenter…obviously a job that would build callus and muscle….what happened to THAT image of Christ.an image our church forgets. Men need to lead by being men…yes I hate to overuse the phrase tender warrior, but it fits
    …I do not recommend this but listen…..I heard a counselor in a marriage talk recall a discussion with a wife that didn’t want to have sex..didn’t like it, want it, any excuse…..He gave her a sheet of paper and asked her to write down all her friends and acquaintances that she wanted her husband to have sex with…he told her to choose well, and give it lots of thought…because at some time in the future if she did not…someone else would……..after the initial anger, she realized that she was not giving her husband what he desperately needed ….and what in God’s plan is a special gift that only she could provide….a mutually beneficial gift….

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