Is sex work for you? What about your spouse? Do you know? Now, for me, the answer is a hands down “No”. I mean, I work hard during sex, and my muscles get tired, I get sweaty and I’m very focused … but I would never call it work. I wouldn’t even call it pleasurable work. It’s just pure recreation, mixed with intimacy. But, what about low-drive spouses? Or women? I’m neither, so I didn’t know. But, I had my suspicions, so I asked my wife.
Turns out sex is work for her. Pleasurable work, she says, but still work, like gardening, or camping. It might be tiring, and it might involve a lot of preparation, but it’s worth it … most of the time.
Well, that’s a new concept for me. I mean, for me, sex is a yes, every time. Unless I’m so sick I wouldn’t have been able to stay conscious. I’ve opted out once, and my wife won’t let me live it down. It might have been because it was our honeymoon. I the flu, and a fever, for the record. Anyways, back to the topic.
As I was saying, for me, sex isn’t work. It’s purely play. So, if sex is an option, the answer is always “yes”.
For my wife, either because she’s a woman or because she’s low-drive (I suspect a mix), it’s different. Sex is a recreational activity, but not necessarily play. Sex is something that takes preparation, it takes focus. It takes continuous effort to keep her mind focused and not let it wander. And so, sometimes, in fact, most of the time, the gut-reaction to sex being an option is “I’m not sure I’m up for that right now.” Sort of it like if someone went “Hey, do you want to go camping? Like right now. No, you can’t pack. No, you can’t book time off work. Right now.” For a lot of us, the answer would be … that sounds nice … but I’m not prepared for that.
So, what can we do about that? Honestly, I’m not sure. It’s still a new idea for me. Right now this is just something that better helps me understand my wife. But, I’m going to be thinking about it and trying some things out. I’ll get back to you if I figure out anything beneficial to both of us. In the mean time, maybe ask yourself, or your spouse: “Is sex work?”
20 thoughts on “Is sex work?”
No, sex is not work for me. Although I understand what both of you are saying. It is in the different ways it is said, but really it is the same in a sense. Recreation is work, pleasurable is recreation…..for me they are the same thing. 🙂
I can say though, in my younger early teens and 20’s (18-24) that I felt more on the end where it was more like pleasurable work and now at 30 it feels more like recreations. I see where both are on the same front now in my life. Just think for some it takes more prep and play enthusiasm in the mindset and thinking than it does for the other.
Hmmmm interesting…last night in bed I was thinking I really really really want to be intimate with him but I also feel like I have been hit by a truck. My first thought was that’s a lot of work and I’m sick. On the other hand I never thought about it like that. I mean sex is usually my playtime with my best friend. Grrrrr.. Jay you got my wheels turning on this one. I just don’t know. Let me chew on this for a while. Like the first commenter said I definitely see both sides.
I think it depends on the invitation. I don’t see it as work, but rather a mechanical mental step that we can choose to take; or not. The step to prepare is not a physical one (work) but rather a mental one. The level of work is only as difficult as I make the mental assent out to be.
The closest I have come to a comparison for desire (mental assent) is the feeling of being hungry. Men are usually always hungry (Generally. I know there are exceptions for a variety of reasons.) and can FEEL the hunger inside themselves. Women (generally) need to be reminded of it. It IS inside me but it’s very different for him than it is for me. (Remember, I’m speaking metaphorically) I need to be “invited” to remember that I’m hungry. Once I take a bite of that invitation, THEN I feel the pangs of hunger and remember that I *want* to eat.
So, the better the invitation the ‘less work’ of mental assent is required.
As a guy, Robyn’s answer was beautiful. You know you are invited to the party (Jay’s conversation yesterday), but you still have to ask for the dance.
Sex is ALWAYS work for me and pretty much for my husband as well. For me it’s an issue of all of the things you mentioned about your wife. (Thanks for the excellent analogy. It is spot on.) For my husband, because he has ED as a result of prostate cancer surgery, getting an erection is a major process. And often, he is just too tired to deal with it.
Always work. If I’m in bed and already relaxed, I don’t want to put that kind of work in just to get back to a state of relaxation that I’m already in.
typical women response
Really? That’s a rather ignorant response. You might want to change that attitude if you want a decent marriage.
Yes, it is, lots of husbands do not understand headship.
And lazy. If you want to devour the prey … you’ve gotta hunt her. Those that don’t understand the mechanics of the hunt, will shrivel and eventually starve to death.
I agree that men should “hunt” but i think that kind of thinking leads to what is very common: men have to work for sex. Like sex is only for men and if they want to have it they have to work really hard. I don’t think that is a good thought because if the Bible says that sex is for both then it is something that should be given in love, from both spouses. Sadly this way of thinking exists in many marriages. I am not saying that the man should be romantic in initiating and so on but it shouldn’t be done to be rewarded or as to get paid for doing some work. I think that’s so wrong. I have noticed that I have that mentality. I try to clean, wash the dishes and take care of our daughter so that my wife will want to have sex with me. I even paid my wife’s haircut because she had joked about “rewarding” me. It costed almost 90$ And I had my doubts because I thought it was a lot of money for something like a haircut, it could be used to help people but I didn’t want to say anything because I was afraid to lose my “reward”. When I told her that she said that she was going to have sex with me anyway. We did have it but it still felt like a reward and it still does. I try to be a good husband to get sex. It shouldn’t be because of that and if we would have sex more frequently then I would still do it but because the lack of sex and because she before have had sex with me after I have been a good man then i do it with that hope but as I said it shouldn’t be like that. sex should be given in love, just as God “so love the world that he GAVE His only Son. Love gives , it doesn’t ask you to do things first.
You have completely misunderstood the meaning of hunt. Sex IS work. Men have headship, they lead. It is not *harder* it appears harder because you have been taught to think like a woman; like a feminist. It seems harder because you have to learn a new way to think.
“Like sex is only for men and if they want to have it they have to work really hard.”
—this is a disjointed thought. You have interpreted the meaning of my words all wrong.
“I don’t think that is a good thought because if the Bible says that sex is for both then it is something that should be given in love, from both spouses.”
—again, your thoughts are disjointed. The Bible says a few things about sex, but never links it to “love”. Especially the verse you are referencing which I believe is from 1 Cor 7. This is about burning desire, so don’t deny each other; it’s about primal copulation. There is nothing about mushy “hearts” and “flowers”.
“but it shouldn’t be done to be rewarded or as to get paid for doing some work.”
—but it IS a reward ” just not in the way unhealthy way you think it is. You cannot see the truth of the reward because you are trying to squish your masculine view through the lenses of femininity. Masculinity is the boasting, peacocking side of our species. The thrill is IN the hunt. What you are talking about is PLACATING and BEGGING ” you are trying to lead from the bottom. This is not the type of ‘hunting’ to which I am referring.
“I think that’s so wrong. I have noticed that I have that mentality. I try to clean, wash the dishes and take care of our daughter so that my wife will want to have sex with me. I even paid my wife’s haircut because she had joked about “rewarding” me. It costed almost 90$ And I had my doubts because I thought it was a lot of money for something like a haircut, it could be used to help people.”
—And there it is right there, the feminist mindset that says men have to perform to get. That is not what I mean “. AT ALL..
“but I didn’t want to say anything because I was afraid to lose my “reward”.”
—“afraid” ” you cannot be a manly hunter on the prowl if you are full of fear of losing what you already have. Her body already belongs to YOU.
“I try to be a good husband to get sex”
—it is irrelevant what kind of husband you are. The Bible doesn’t say, “Don’t withhold sex from your husband, unless he is a bad husband and doesn’t do what you want.” The ‘hunt’ I am referring to has zip to do with your character of being a good husband or not. The truth is you are a fallen wounded man (just like she is) … you will never be “good enough to get sex.” Your wife cannot tell you what is “good enough” in behaviour, don’t give that power to her. It belongs to the Holy Spirit.
“It shouldn’t be because of that and if we would have sex more frequently then I would still do it but because the lack of sex and because she before have had sex with me after I have been a good man then i do it with that hope but as I said it shouldn’t be like that.”
—it isn’t like that. YOU have control of your own marriage. You have God-given headship in your marriage to run it the way you believe it should be. Again, it isn’t like that. You are right, “it shouldn’t be like that” but it is you are making your own marriage like that.
You have bought into the feminist lie of interpreting your wife as the same as (equal to) yourself. Males and females have nothing to do with equality, the two of you are opposites. You are not running your marriage; your wife has controlling interest. You giving her the power in your marriage.
…. stop being afraid.
Yep. Check out my post yesterday. Confidence is sexy. Not fear.
oh ok, hmm it wasn’t the answer I expected but it is very interesting. how do I take the lead then? Doesnt Jesus say that the one that wants to be the greatest has to be the slave of others. Doesn’t that apply to marriage? I ask because I am confused on how I can be a leader and at the same time be humble as Jesus says. Robyn you wrote that her body is mine, does that mean that I can demand sex? It feels a little harsh. How do I take the power back in a good way? You Really got me thinking, I would like to learn more.
And this is the problem with how Christians have taught men. We’ve been taught to basically be submissive, going against what the Bible teaches us is our role.
We’re bred to be “nice guys”, and it ruins marriages.
And no, Jesus didn’t say to be the slave to others, He said to be a servant. That’s very different. A slave has no choice. A servant serves out of love. Husbands are called to be servant leaders in their household, just as Jesus was a servant leader. Yes, He died, but He didn’t die because people wanted Him to. He died because it would accomplish the goal. In our lives, dying is likely not going to accomplish our goals. Our job is to do what must be done, and in our houses, what must be done is leadership.
But, you can’t “take” the power back. You lead, you don’t oppress. You can’t demand submission. True submission is given freely. So, be the leader that is worth following.
But what does it mean to lead? How is what I am doing. Is different from leading?
Robyn talked about being the hunter and it sounded like a man is very dominant but at the same time you say a man doesn’t take power but leads, it sounds like I have to be weaker. What does it mean to lead in a practical way? How is it different from what I am doing now? Does leading mean that I also have control over our sex life.
Yesterday we had sex piv for at least 30 to 40 minutes
non-stop and I enjoyed every minute of it and after a short break for some food we were at it again. I could do that everyday for two hours or more if I save having an orgasm. I was drenched with sweat but I felt so good and so into her (pun intended) that I could have went on for several hours. Terrific exercise and so much fun I never thought of it as work at all. She seemed happy to help?
Very much on the work side. If I’m already in bed, forget it, I’m worn out mentally and physically. I support (babysit really) so many people at work and home that by the end of the day I can take anymore and I’m done with people and human interaction. With the fact I’ve always been low drive sex really is one more thing that somebody needs from me when all I want to do is turn off the world and turn on the silence for some well deserved sleep. Morning sex? I’m up and working 2-3 hours before my wife is even awake, and she is not a morning person.
It is play for me and work for my darling wife. She has fibromyalgia and chronic pain so sex brings little pleasure for her. It has been this way for 30+ years. 🙁
I consider myself a pretty sex positive gal, but even reading the title of the post I was curious where you were going to go with the post because my answer to the question was, “I want so badly to say that it isn’t work, but I regret to say it is.” Like your wife said, I find it tremendously pleasurable work, and I think it is worth the effort nearly every time. I think this really hits on the reason why I initiate most and while I wish he would initiate more than he does, it actually probably works better this way because of the prep work that does go into sex for me. Thank you, thinking on this difference between my hubby and me is actually very helpful! The parallel example I have for my husband would be talking to me sometimes. I process out loud and it is sometimes work for him to actively listen to me. He thinks it is important work and he enjoys talking to me, but it is still work for him in a way that it is not work for me; it’s just what I do! I am tempted to be offended that something so important to me feels like work to him, but I suspect that is what sex often is for some women. It’s worth it! But it is still something to work at.
You’re quite welcome Kay! Thanks for reading.