OUR HOUSE: The Bedroom #4 Dear Matt and Simo,
I used to think that communication was the key to a happy marriage. Isn’t that, after all, what the experts say? And so I set about to communicate with a capital C. Every grievance, each oversight, any hint of bump up against my ever wary feelings— all very carefully communicated lest we miss out on the kind of marriage we both wanted.
It didn’t work.
Instead of bringing us closer, my determination to tell all drove a wedge between us. My constant “nicely said” rebuke left Phil feeling defensive and brittle around me. I was building a wall between us and for the life of me, I didn’t know why or what to do about it.
Until I noticed a pattern.
Every time we made love, the wall fell down… at least for a while. My feelings stayed temporarily safe from that tendency to make a big deal out of everything, and your dad just got nicer, with a certain sweetness that made him easy to live with.
And I began to wonder if maybe communication might not be the only key to a happy marriage. In fact, I began to suspect that intimacy— safe, satisfying, sexuality at it’s best— might be at least as important as all that talking I’d thought we needed.
Years and decades later, I’m sure of it. And because I now believe that the quantity and quality of your lovemaking bears a direct reflection on the quantity and quality of your communication, I have some advice for those just figuring it out.
For the men:
Respect the role beauty plays in her sexuality. If you can help her know her own beauty, see herself through your eyes, and shield her from the biting criticism she sees in the mirror, she will respond with the passion you know is in there.
How To Respect Your Wife’s Need For Sensual Beauty:
- Tell her she’s beautiful. Often. More than you think is necessary. Be specific.
- Smile at her, admire the way she swings her hips when she knows you’re looking, tell her what that does to you.
- Shower her with the feminine beauty that she craves. Bubble bath, perfume, lotions, candles.
- Make room in your budget for pretty things: underwear, lingerie, fresh sheets. Beauty matters— to her.
- Keep your office out of your bedroom and your clothes off the floor. Help her create a haven in your room- a place not for work but for play.
- Give her time to cultivate beauty. A woman who works all the time and doesn’t take time for beauty is not a woman who is thinking about her sensuality.
- Beware of crass humor, it’s a sure turn off for women. Instead, lighten the tone of your romance by laughing with her.
- Clean yourself up so that she wants to be near you. Take stock of what you look like and smell like from your teeth to your toes. It matters.
How To Respect Your Husband’s Need For Sex:
- This is not some sort of base animalist urge, but a God given need for intimate physical expression.
- Tell your husband that you are always available, that you always want him even when sometimes you don’t feel like you do.
- Determine to partner with your husband in his fight for purity, it’s your battle too. Let him know you want all of him, always.
- Be the willing, eager recipient of all he has to give while you guide him in giving you pleasure too. No man wants to make love to a martyr. His pleasure increases exponentially with yours.
- Save your energy for sex. Budget your time, your day, your availability so that he knows you’re willing and waiting and eager.
- Seduce him on a regular basis. A phone call, an invitation, a note.
- Fill his memory with sensual pictures of your sensuality for when he doesn’t have you near.
- Cultivate your own sensuality. You are made for this, biologically and emotionally. Own that. Enjoy it.
And remember this: When all is well and vibrant and satisfying in the bedroom, all those annoyances and bumps that happen in real life just don’t seem to matter as much.
And this: If it’s not working, don’t give up or pull away. Get help.
From my heart,
P.S. Thoughts? How can your husband bring beauty into your sensuality? And how can your wife respect your sexuality? It’s high time we started talking about this area of intimacy.
(image by Hillary Kupish)