Thursday, September 16, 2010
Sometimes David and Laura reach a happy détente on how and when they’ll have sex, other times their differences threaten the marriage. When I interviewed Laura she said, “I’ll be curious how we compare to the other people you talk to because my husband always thinks that we’re broken. He told me he’s concerned this might be the end of our marriage. That broke my heart.”
Laura's solution to this dilemma? Make a deal with David (she is a movie exec, after all). If he wants sex--really really wants it--she will agree, with no complaint. The thing is, he doesn't just want sex, as in, a quickie, he wants sex as in "making love," as in lots of time spent on the act, orgasms (non-fake) had by all, etc... Does this agreement charge up their sex lives, or does Laura get fed up and renege on the deal? Well, you'll just have to read below and find out now, won't you?
And while I'm being all bossy, here are some questions for you:
--How do you handle it when one person wants sex and the other doesn't?
--Do different levels of desire cause problems in your relationship?
(True Wife's Tales are an In Bed With Married Women continuing series in which women tell the damn truth about their sex life, no matter how embarrassing, non-existent, hot or enviable it may be. If you'd like to tell your story, click here.)
In Bed With Married Women: How’s your sex life these days?
Laura: Our sex life is, in my opinion, just fine. We have it on average, two to three times per week. In
my husband’s opinion, we could be having a lot more. But physiologically, I’m at a phase where I’m not producing any sex drive hormones. That’s apparently very normal. It takes some foreplay--whether that be a glass of wine or a little kissing--to get those hormones rocking and rolling for me. My husband has raging hormones. He tells me “There’s not a moment of any day that I’m not thinking of having sex with you. Anytime you say ‘Let’s do it,’ I’m there, I ready, let’s go right now.”
We’re very very open in our communication about our differences about sex. We go through a cycle about every three months when aren’t seeing eye to eye on how much is enough sex. It will turn into a knockdown dragout, let’s-figure-this-out fight. You’d think we’d get it figured out. He would like to have sex at least three times a week. I would be totally fine with once. But I told him, “Honey, if you need sex, I will say yes every time you seriously are asking for sex. When you REALLY need it, tell me ‘I really would like to have sex tonight’ and I will say yes every time--no matter what. No matter how I’m feeling, no matter how much I don’t want to, I will shift my thinking and I will give it to you.”
This is what ends up happening: He will ask two or three times a week and I will always say “Yeah, honey, that sounds good. Let’s go.” Then he’ll say, “I appreciate that you’re open to giving me it every time I want it, but I’m starting to feel sad that you never instigate.” So THEN I’ve got the pressure on myself to instigate once a week.
This works really well for awhile, and then I start to get resentful. I think, “Why do I have to do this? I’m exhausted. You have no idea what my life is like” and we have the fight again. This is our cycle.
In Bed: When you agree to have sex, is it required that you enjoy yourself or can you just show up?
Laura: Oh, that’s the problem. I shouldn’t say “the problem”, that’s “the interesting challenge.” My husband insists that I have an orgasm every time we have sex. For a man to have an orgasm, it doesn’t take any mental energy at all. It actually takes mental energy not to get off. For me, it’s not always just a quick thing. I kind of have to get my mind there. I have to focus some energy. When it happens, it’s always great. But 90% of the time, it takes a little bit of mental and physical energy to have an orgasm. So for me to say yes to him I have to work to get in the mindset because I know I have to get off. I know I do or he won’t stop. And I refuse to fake.
So I have think, “Okay, it’s tonight. I’ll have a glass of wine and do a little meditative thinking.” Once we get going, it’s all good. But it’s just having to shift directions in the evening after a busy day. He doesn’t understand how much mental and physical energy I have to put into sex because he doesn’t have to put any of that in. And his feelings are hurt that I have to put so much energy in. But I keep telling him, “You’ve got the hormones, I don’t. Physiologically our bodies are different and that’s okay. Don’t take it so personally. I am attracted to you and I think you’re a wonderful man. I just don’t have the hormones ranging like you do.” He’ll be okay with that for awhile, but he’ll get sad about it after a few months when he starts to see me go back to my old habits of “Oh, I don’t want to.”
In Bed: Can you just get by with a quickie?
Laura: He doesn’t like quickies. He prefers, as he calls them, longies. I always tell him, “If you just want to hop on and get off, I’m yours. If you have tension and you just need to release it, I’m your hole.” Anytime, I’ll do that--as long as I don’t have the pressure of having to get off myself. But he says, “That’s not really what I want. I don’t want to just get off--I want to have an intimate relationship with my wife.” And I think, “Oh, man, I just wish you wanted a quickie.”
In Bed: When it’s your turn to instigate, what do you do?
Laura: It’s usually candles, music. I look at him downstairs, and I’ll go “I’m going to go upstairs,” and, if it’s early, he’ll know. I’ll go upstairs and light a candle, put on some music--we have several CDs that we like for that purpose.
In Bed: Like what?
Laura: Sting, James Blunt and the Grey's Anatomy Soundtrack from Season 2. If he doesn’t come up in like 15 minutes, I’ll peek my head down and go, “Hell-oooo.” Or if he’s up in bed already, I’ll just take off my clothes and jump on him. That’s one of his favorite ways.
In Bed: Are there things he wants to try that you don’t want to do?
When he asks me to do things sexually that are a stretch for me, it makes me very uncomfortable. I’ve tried to think of something I could do that’s not quite what he wants but something that’s more adventurous than the regular old me. But it’s very uncomfortable to me. He wants simple things that probably aren’t that bizarre. Like he has asked me to dress up in business attire and, you know, be in my office. He loves when I’m in business attire. He just thinks that the sexiest thing. That would be a huge favor to him and I can’t even do that. And it’s not even that big of a deal, right? It’s not that unusual to role play.
He loves garter belts and stockings on me and I rarely put them on for him. He used to set out a full ensemble on the bed. I’d go upstairs and when I’d see it, I’d know. He buys me tons of lingerie, the kind where everything matches. I have dozens of ensembles that he’s bought and I never wear them. Once every five months, I might put it on as part of letting him know that I’m instigating. He would love if I put it on every time. But to me that’s one more bit of energy I have to use up to put those stupid stockings on and fumble with the stupid garter belt things. But on his birthday and our anniversary, I’ll put it on, just because he loves it so much.
In Bed: What happens in your bedroom?
Laura: There are sort of four or five different scenarios that almost always play out. They almost always involve lots of kissing and touching. He thoroughly enjoys oral sex, not me on him, but him on me. That’s like one of his favorite things in the world, I don’t get it. 95% of the time, that’s part of it. There’s not a lot of oral sex from me to him. I do on occasion, but it's not something I like to do. I’ll do it if he asks. We have four or five positions. I know which ones get him off the fastest and I’ll push him into those if I can if I want to get to sleep. Lots of me on top. We never do it in the missionary position, never ever. I could be on my back, but he’ll have me twisted sideways. I let him lead because I’m up for almost anything. He’ll flip me over and pull me to the edge of the bed or stand up with me on my hands and knees. But I always know that when he puts me on my back and puts my ankles up on my shoulders, then we’re getting toward the end. That’s the easiest way for him to get off. So once we get in that position, I think “Oh, good, we’re coming down the home stretch.”
When my husband talks about intimacy, he means sex. But for me, my an intimate relationship is far more than sex. It’s just touching feet in bed at night when we don’t want to have sex but just want to know that we’re there. It’s the talks about raising our children, our dreams for the future, our philsophy about life and spirituality.