For many, sex isn’t stressful at all. When sex occurs as it was designed, couples become closer, their marriage is strengthened, and the difficulties in life seem to fade away. However, sex (or even conversations with your spouse about sex) sometimes becomes quite stressful. If one spouse is “fine” with how their sex life is going and the other is decidedly “not fine”, problems will arise. If these problems make the subject of sex more stressful than stress relieving, the marriage can suffer. While every marriage encounters “I’d rather” moments, some allow those moments to become the norm. For whatever reason, sex just isn’t viewed as exciting, fun or worth their time. The newest episode of The Big Bang Theory does more to relax them and disconnect them from their day than sex with their spouse.
If sex has become stressful, consider the following:
1. Do you believe what God says about sex? While our culture is continually screaming, “SEX” as loud as possible, many Christians today rarely discuss it openly. But God discusses it openly. In fact, the first command God gave Adam and Eve…was to have sex. Literally, God said, “Be fruitful and multiply,” but it was the first thing God told them to do. Look at one another. Have no shame in your nakedness. Become one. There was no stress. No anxiety. No fears. No hindrances. And no limits. God did not create sex to be stressful, nor does He desire conversation with your spouse about the subject of sex to be stressful. In His eyes, you are one unit, not two individuals. He desires you to be one, and your oneness should not cause stress. Read what the Bible has to say about sex, and read it often. You’ll continue to discover that sex with your spouse was designed to be stimulating, not stressful.
2. Which causes more problems for you, the thought about sex or the physical act itself? If your thoughts and perceptions of what sex is cause you problems then study, pray and ask God to help you view sex as He views sex. If it is the act itself, here are some things to consider. Performance is a big hang up for many men and women alike. If we come to bed thinking our spouse is supposed to react one way and then they don’t we can leave disappointed. Here are some specific thoughts for both men and women:
Men – Understand that many women do not orgasm with every sexual encounter. Sometimes this is because they don’t know their bodies well enough or communicate well enough about how to climax. Other times it is simply because they don’t feel the need to orgasm with every encounter. Don’t pressure your wife to orgasm. If she doesn’t ever orgasm, encourage her to communicate with you about how to please and then do it! Also understand that what works one day may not work the next day. Women are complex and if you try to…kiss here, rub here, press here, jackpot…you will never get the results you want. Show up to each sexual encounter with a fresh perspective of how to please your wife in that moment not with preconceived ideas of what may have worked before.
Women – If you think that sex is just for your husband then think again. God designed our bodies with a specific knob of flesh (the clitoris) that has no other purpose than to provide sexual fulfillment. Men can’t say that about their bodies. If you are one who has never or rarely experience orgasm, then please read what we have written here and here. Those are just the basics but are a good place to start. If you do experience orgasm but feel pressure from your husband to orgasm every time you have sex communicate to him how that makes you feel. But be sure he knows you want to make yourself available to please him. And the more you make yourself available, the more you’ll learn how he can help get you there.
Sex is meant to be pleasurable and satisfying. This pleasure and satisfaction combine not just the physical side of things but also the emotional, mental and spiritual levels. If sex is not pleasurable on any of these levels we encourage you to pray about it, communicate about it and work on it. We all need a place in this life to relax, find release and connection. Sex is meant specifically to meet many of those needs in marriage.