Question: My husband feels frustrated that I don’t want to have sex with him more often. But after a long day at work, I’m usually tired or just not in the mood. I feel guilty and sometimes resent his desire for more sex. Given our differences, is it possible for us to have a satisfying sexual relationship?


Other than finances, sex is probably the most challenging topic couples have to navigate in marriage. How they deal with it can mean the difference between festering resentment and deepened intimacy.

You and your husband need to talk about your feelings in a nonthreatening manner. If you respond critically to his needs or withdraw from him, you will do further damage and deepen the isolation.

Often, the way spouses look at sexual intimacy is not a matter of right or wrong. Your lack of interest is probably not evidence of rejection toward your husband, nor is his frequent interest likely a sign of self-absorption. It takes humility and strength to see the situation from the other person’s perspective.

Your husband may need to realize that a wife can’t easily "flip the switch" sexually when she’s had a challenging day. Help him see the value of emotional foreplay, not simply in bed but throughout the evening. His patience and kindness may set your mood more than soft music or candles ever could.

If you need to tell your husband no, do it with respect. You might suggest setting aside time in the next day or two. We tend to think that sex should be spontaneous, but if it’s not planned, it may never happen.

Getting more sleep will also do wonders for your sexual desire. If you’re exhausted, your brain doesn’t function well. And since your brain is your most important sex organ, that’s a problem. You might want to talk with your husband about going to bed earlier.

So to answer your question, yes, it is possible for you to have a sexually satisfying relationship with your husband. Get plenty of rest, understand how you’re both wired for intimacy, and enjoy loving each other in a way that honours the Creator of our sexuality.

Glenn Lutjens was a counsellor at Focus on the Family in Colorado at the time of publication.

© 2008 Focus on the Family. All rights reserved. International copyright secured. Used by permission.

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