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  • Aug 02 / 2016
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Sexual Intimacy Mistakes that can Damage Your Marriage

 


 

Sexual intimacy between a husband and wife is a powerful force that enriches their marriage and helps to bonds them together for life. But in many marriages, it can also be a destructive force, causing great pain and resentment, and even contributing to the failure or the marriage. Add to that the fact that nearly all problems in a marriage will effect sexual intimacy in one way or another, and sex becomes the one area of marriage where we have the most to gain, and also the most to lose.

Below is a list of 7 mistakes that can not only damage your sex life. Most of them, if left to fester over time, can also destroy your marriage.

Using Sex to Punish or Reward

Though this is common in most marriages on some level. This practice is not healthy, and in fact can be extremely destructive to a marriage. Often the spouse with the lower sexual desire is guilty of using sex to punish their spouse or manipulate them in order to get their way. This behavior forces the spouse with the higher sexual desire into a pleaser or avoider roll, as they try not to upset their spouse and become cut off sexually. Something else that falls into this category, is promising your spouse sexual intimacy and then not following through for one reason or another.

Overlooking the Importance of Sex in Your Marriage

A fulfilling sex life and the increased intimacy that comes with it, is extremely important to our marriages. While it’s possible for a marriage to survive without it, I personally don’t believe it’s possible for a marriage to thrive without it. In my own marriage, when sexual intimacy with my wife is hitting on all cylinders, life just moves along easier. We get along better, argue less, and in general are happier. I’ve heard it said that Sex is the lubricant that makes our marriages move along easier. From my experiences in my own marriage, I would say that this statement is dead on.

Rushing Through Sex

Quickies are great, and should be a part of every married couple’s sexual menu. There’s just something about the passion and intensity of a spur of the moment quickie that I love. But to me, the quickie is mostly physical, with little emotional intimacy and connection with my wife that I crave. Limiting your sexual intimacy menu to rushed quickies, or entering into sexual intimacy being focused on the climax, will rob you and your spouse of the intense emotional connection that you can experience through slowing down, and fully experiencing a love making session.

Pushing Your Spouse out of Their Comfort Zone

Sexual intimacy is the ultimate expression of love between a husband and a wife. Nothing messes this up more than forcing your spouse to do something sexually that they are uncomfortable with, or performing acts that degrade or humiliate them. Just as sexual intimacy can bring you and your spouse together both physically and emotionally, forcing your spouse to perform sexual acts against their will can drive you and your spouse apart, and damage your relationship more than you can imagine. It also goes against the very reason we make love to our spouse, which is to show our intense love for our spouse through making love and by providing them with the intense pleasure that accompanies it. Taking things slow and being respectful to our spouses during sex will build trust and yield huge benefits in our marriages.

Acting Lazy or Being Selfish

Ideally, making love involves both spouses pulling out all the stops to bring each other great physical pleasure, while connecting on a deep emotional level. The process breaks down when one or both of them refuse to give freely of themselves for the benefit of their spouse. And while there will usually be times when we will choose to put our needs aside and serve our spouse sexually, expecting nothing in return. It becomes a serious problem when this becomes the norm, or it becomes expected. Over time, anger and resentment will develop on the part of the serving spouse, eventually causing them to no longer desire sex.

Don’t Assume Your Spouse Knows What You Want

Your spouse cannot read your mind, and what made you feel Oh so good last time, might not be the hot ticket next time. So unless your spouse gets lucky, they are not likely to know exactly what you need in sex unless you tell them.

Bottom line, ask for what you need, because your spouse has no way of knowing what causes you the greatest pleasure unless you tell them. It may be as simple asking them to speed up or slow down, a little left or a little right. Another option is to physically guide them in how or where to touch you, and with how much pressure.

Take the time to explore and learn each other’s bodies. It may take some time, but I guarantee it will not only be fun, but will eventually lead to spectacular sex.

Sexual Refusal

Though stereotypically this is a something associated with women. In past years, more and more men are also becoming sexual refusers, and putting off their wives sexual advances. While we obviously can’t expect our spouse to submit to our sexual advances each and every time, hearing the word no more often than we hear yes, causes anger and resentment on the part of the spouse being constantly refused. In many cases this can lead to infidelity, and even divorce.

I would say to the refusing spouse. I understand that you are not often in the mood for sex. But Instead of just telling your spouse no. Tell them, that while you’re not currently in the mood for sex, you’re open to them trying to get you in the mood.

And to the spouse being refused. While we often tend to lay the blame for sexual refusal and other issues within the marriage, at the feet of the spouse with the lower sexual desire. Often times the person we should be blaming is our self. In my own marriage I caused many of the problems myself by pursuing my wife only when I desired sex, and ignoring her need for emotional connection through conversation. When I corrected this problem and started giving her the emotional connection she needed, she eventually started giving me the physical connection I needed. It just goes to show, that often our problems are self-inflicted.

 

  • Jun 30 / 2016
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Hug your way to a Better Marriage

On average, a hug between two people is about 1-3 seconds. But researchers have discovered something fantastic. That when a hug lasts longer, say 10-20 seconds, there is a therapeutic effect on the body and mind that is not only good for our marriage, but also helps in the following ways:

  1. The nurturing touch of a hug helps build trust and sense of safety.
  2. Hugging boosts oxytocin levels, causing us to feel closer and more connected.
  3. Hugs help to strengthen the immune system, keeping you healthy and disease free.
  4. Hugging boosts self-esteem, helping us feel better about ourselves and our lives.
  5. Hugs relax muscles and reduce tension in the body.
  6. Extending a hug raises serotonin levels, which lifts our mood and helps us to feel happier.
  7. Hugs are a lot like meditation and laughter, in that they teach us to let go and be present in the moment. Hugs get you out of your normal patterns, connecting you with your heart and your feelings.
  8. Lastly, the energy exchanged between two people hugging is an investment in their relationship, encouraging empathy, understanding, and trust between them.

“We need four hugs a day for survival. We need eight hugs a day for maintenance. We need twelve hugs a day for growth.” Family Therapist, Virginia Satir

So, what are you waiting for? All this and a better marriage can be had simply by taking our spouse in our arms and holding them tight. And when you do, don’t rush through it like you have in the past. Instead, take the time to hold them in your arms, feeling the warmth from their body premediate yours as you both begin to melt into one flesh, and the worries of your day just disappear.

Time spent in the arms of your spouse is never wasted.

  • May 24 / 2016
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Which Wolf are you Feeding?

Recently I came across a Native American parable about the forces that are at war within each of us. The parable characterized these forces as fighting wolves.

As we go through our lives, our daily choices and actions choose which wolf we feed, and therefore give control of our life over too.

But these same wolves are at war in our marriages as well. Through the choices we make in our relationship with our husband or wife, we choose which wolf to feed, and with it, the direction our marriage will take. When we allow anger, resentment and distrust to build up within our hearts, we feed the Evil Wolf, enabling it to take control of our thoughts and emotions, and slowly eat away at our marriage.

Likewise, when we infuse our marriage with grace, forgiveness and unconditional love, we feed, and therefore tip the balance of power in favor of the Good Wolf, improving our relationship with our spouse, and strengthening our marriage.

Which wolf are you feeding?

Are the thoughts you typically entertain regarding your marriage and your spouse, mostly positive, or are they negative? Does it even matter? It definitely does. No matter how small something is, if you fixate on it, it will grow in size until it overwhelms you and becomes the only thing you see. Likewise, when we concentrate on the positives of a situation, or at least refuse to feed the negative ones, the positive attitude that results can help us to focus on the good and work toward the outcome we desire.

I found out during the rebuilding of my marriage, that the thoughts I entertain about my wife, my marriage, and my life in general, have a huge effect on my mood, and especially my attitude towards my wife. I learned that the emotions I carried with me throughout the day, dictated the direction my day would go, regardless of what happened. That by deciding whether concentrate on the negative or positive aspects of my current situation, I decide which feelings I give control over my thoughts, and how I will respond to that situation. Learning and applying this in my life has made a huge difference in my mood and ability to control my anger, changing my marriage forever.

I challenge you to stop concentrating on the negative aspects of your spouse and your marriage, and instead to learn to focus on what is good about it. Over time, doing this will shift the balance of power from the Evil wolf to the Good wolf, changing our life for the better.

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