I was talking with someone yesterday about some difficulties they were having with sex, and I asked if they minded if I wrote a post on the topic. After thinking about it, I realized the issue we were discussing went far beyond just their specific conflict, and was probably based in a much larger principle that more people will find traction with. But, this post is not dealing with what them and I were talking about. I had intended for it to be, but it sort of morphed into something else. So, I’ll try to tackle the other issue soon.
And so, in this post, we’re going to talk about how spouses need to start lying less to each other in bed, and trusting each other more.
Now, sometimes one spouse lies and the other learns not to trust them. That’s a difficult dynamic to break. But more often I find that you have one spouse who lies, perhaps unintentionally, perhaps to themselves, and so they don’t trust their spouse not to lie. After all, I do it, they must as well. This creates a boundary in the marriage between the two spouses, and sets them against each other as enemies, more than allies, even if they don’t realize it yet. But, sometimes it doesn’t go that far. Sometimes it just results in a lack of confidence, a fear of trying new things, being afraid to be intimate and vulnerable with your spouse.
A lack of confidence is not sexy
I hear from wives, on occasion, who tell me that their husband constantly asks in bed if they are okay.
Are you alright?
Is this hurting?
Are you enjoying yourself?
We can stop if you want.
You don’t have to do that if you don’t like it.
They aren’t emailing me to tell me that their husband is so sweet and this just makes them melt. They’re emailing because their husband is ruining the mood. Most women want a strong, assertive, confident man in bed. Not one that is selfish, but neither one that is so unsure of himself that he constantly questions whether he’s doing a good job, especially when the wife is constantly responding positively.
If you’re that type of husband, stop asking!
Because the message you send to your wife is that either you don’t trust her to tell you the truth, or that you think she’s lying outright.
Now, for all the wives who are nodding, many of you do the same thing in return! How often does he need to tell you are beautiful, sexy, desirable to him before you stop calling him a liar and start trusting what he says? You would not believe all the comments on posts, surveys, in emails, on Facebook and twitter that I get from men who don’t know what to do with their wife. They want so desperately to see their wife naked that it pains them, because being refused the very sight of their bride is like calling him a liar to his face, that he doesn’t believe you are beautiful, sexy or attractive.
In a past survey, we found that 96% of husbands find their wife attractive, and yet I hear weekly from husbands who haven’t seen their wife naked in decades, and from wives who read the going to bed naked post and say “Oh, I couldn’t do that, he might see me!” Yeah, he might! That’s the point! Now, I know, some of you are dealing with self-esteem issues, and you’re working through them. I know it’s been a difficult unit in the course we’re putting together for some in our pilot group, and I’m thrilled that they’re working through these issues. But some women…you just need to start trusting your husband, and stop calling him a liar, if not in words, than in actions.
Lying is only going to hurt you, your spouse and your relationship
On the other side of the coin, if you are always responding positively, but it’s not always a positive experience, you need to cut that out as well. Of course, the extreme of this is faking an orgasm. The stats say that a fair number of women do, and not an insignificant number of men either!
Some do it because they don’t want to hurt their spouses’ feelings, either because it’s just not feeling good, or because they know they just won’t orgasm, even though it feels good. Others just get to the point where they’ve had enough, but know their spouse won’t let it go, so they fake an orgasm so that sex can be done.
But all this does is train your spouse how to be a bad lover, or enforce bad communication, or avoid conflict, which isn’t healthy. Because after all, conflict is good and healthy, and learning to manage conflict, to talk through it, to resolve it, is critical to a successful marriage, be it when talking about finances, parenting, theology, or sex.
But faking orgasms isn’t the only thing. I know too many husbands who become workaholics, because it’s easier to bury yourself you in your work than to spend time with a spouse who refuses to have sex, or will only do so “when the planets align”, a phrase I hear far too often in emails from husbands. Its easier to stay at the office a little longer, to do more work at home late at night, to focus on a job that gives you validation, respect from peers and some semblance of worth, than turn to your spouse and say “I’m not happy, and I seem to be avoiding home, because it’s easier than dealing with our marriage.” And that’s not grounds for divorce, but it is grounds for a conversation, coaching, or perhaps counseling if there’s a serious enough issue. Something needs to be done, because the marriage is dying if you don’t want to come home to your spouse. You might be able to stay married, but it will be an empty, hollow marriage, which will still negatively impact you, your spouse, your kids, your job, your church, and ministry you are doing. Staying silent is a lie of omission, and you aren’t helping anyone, least of all you and your spouse.
So, stop lying, start trusting. I know this is a bit hard hitting for some, but it’s what’s on my mind, and I think sometimes we pull punches when we shouldn’t. So, I’m going to let it stand as is instead of editing it into something nice and fluffy.