Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Just Ask Joyce: "My husband constantly pressures me for sex."

Q: “My husband pressures me constantly for sex. I feel guilty when I don’t give in because he pouts. He also hangs it over my head that he could get it from any woman at work if he wanted to, so that leaves me insecure. We’re in our mid-30s and have two small children. I work a full-time job. He doesn’t understand that sometimes I just want to go to sleep! There has to be a good middle ground, but how do you get there when you have a husband who’s never satisfied?”

Joyce: Lots of wives feel as you do regarding the demands placed upon them for sex — especially moms of small children. Whether you work outside the home or inside, ordering up a family is a taxing responsibility. It requires an abundance of energy. You deserve time for appropriate rest before you start all over again the next day. 

As a wife, mother, and career woman, I understand the foreboding load of balancing life and love. Here are some underlying principles I would suggest for the two of you to embrace in order to keep your marriage strong and love alive.

  • Escape with him. Find a weekend sitter and surprise him with a getaway. Yes, he’ll be expecting sex, so map out a game plan. Once you’re en route to your destination, set out the boundaries: “I sleep in; don’t touch me till then.” Often you will find that men will respect limitations as long as they know there’s an invitation waiting on the other side of the drawn line. If you have set the guidelines for the weekend, you will have the mindset for the appropriate balance as well.
  • Let him hear your heart. Getting away with just the two of you will be a great time to visit the uneasy feelings you are experiencing. Then, discuss a way that sex can be gratifying for you both. Tell him you would like to be the initiator at times. (I strongly feel this ingredient is missing in your relationship.) You want sex to be a fulfillment for both of you – not be viewed as a duty or drudgery. He wants your emotional connection as much, if not more, than the physical connection. (If he doesn’t, remind him how enjoyable it can be when you are “emotionally” involved.)
  • Lay down the law. A solid marriage is one where each spouse looks out for the other, laying his or her own needs aside. The shoe fits the same for him as it does for you. Your needs should be more important to him. Likewise, his needs should be more important to you. When looking out for the other, no one gets left out, and no one gets to pout. So, Rule #1: No pouting! Rule #2: He doesn’t get to hold you hostage to insecurity – ever! That is forbidden. No woman feels sexually connected to a man who uses “I can get it anytime I want it” as leverage. Truth is, any man can anytime; those kinds of women – and men – are a dime a dozen. But, a man who truly loves a woman would never threaten her with the possibility. Let him know you’re done with that sort of immature mentality.
  • Consider it flattering! Your husband still desires you! That beats the alternative any day of the week. There are many wives who long for her husband’s touch. You are still the delight of his days and nights. You won’t be a mother of small children forever. They will soon be grown and gone. But long before that, they will become more self-sufficient, leaving you time to please your man. In the meantime, it’s important to keep the mindset of meeting his needs, but again, with boundaries. You are important, too, and he should be taking care of you.

I have more to say about this in two of my books: Keeping His Pants On Until He Gets Home and Turning Her On and Keeping Her Heart. These bookends for marriage are chock-full of principles for keeping your intimacy alive, including the warning signs of how it might be suffering and how to fix it. Whatever you do, get help. Too many marriages end because of quiet desperation.

Change your life … NOW! Write Joyce Oglesby, Family-Life Fitness Pro™, at I’m here to help! Check out my books and other resources today at

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