What is your husband saying that you might be misunderstanding?

Alone in the car for a long drive recently, I turned on the radio to find some music that would help me stay alert.

I landed on a classic oldies station (meaning every single song was something from my youth).

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A lovely loveliness of links from October

It’s time for a Loveliness of Links from last month!

Just as a loveliness of ladybugs all working together can help cultivate a healthy garden, a loveliness of blog posts can help you cultivate a healthy—and intimate—marriage. Read More →

no

Once I got the hang of not refusing, I was on a roll. No more “no” for me!

In some ways, it was easy—and got easier with time.  Many of the reasons I used to have for refusing had evaporated. As I met my husband’s emotional needs through sexual attention, it became easier for him to give me the emotional attention that I needed—and that made it easier for me to be sexual with him.

“No” was out of my vocabulary, and as our relationship healed, I didn’t miss it at all.

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Has grief been part of the process of healing your marriage?

My decision to work on the sexual intimacy in my marriage was made at the moment I realized how deeply I’d been hurting my husband throughout years of sexual rejection, duty sex, disrespect, and making him a low priority in my life.

It is probably the least self-centered decision I’ve made in my life. At the time, I had only a vague idea of how to proceed. “Have more sex” was about all I could come up with at the time. Since we had an essentially sexless marriage, even once-a-month sex on a consistent basis would be an improvement—and just the thought of that overwhelmed me. Read More →

laundry

My wedding vows were easy to say. When I married Big Guy, I promised, “ I take you, [Big Guy], to be my husband, to have and to hold from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish, until we are parted by death. This is my solemn vow.”

It was an easy promise to say. It wasn’t such an easy promise to keep. Read More →

stumble

Your heart has softened, and you’ve begun to understand how much your refusal has hurt your husband.

You’ve decided to change your approach to sexual intimacy, with a goal of no more refusing. You know that your husband receives your love best through sex, and you’re determined to make sure he knows you love him. Read More →

elephant

A recent conversation with a friend reminded me of how overwhelming it can be to face the need to work on sexual intimacy in our marriages.

When we are in a habit of withholding sex from our husbands—no matter why the habit began or whether we’ve even been aware of it—the challenge can be daunting. Read More →

enemy3

Four years ago, I was beginning to see that our marriage was not at all in a good place. My husband and I were having another argument about sex. There were so many arguments, with each of us on opposite sides. It’s your fault. No, it’s yours. You need to change. You’re the one who thinks it’s a problem so you need to change. Back and forth, we went, pitted against each other. Read More →

sacrifice_roses

When I first heard the song “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers,” I hadn’t yet had a real kiss or a boyfriend—but I thought it was the saddest song I’d ever heard. When the man stops giving a woman flowers, the relationship is over.

My husband wooed me with flowers. Somewhere in his life, he had learned that flowers were the way a man showed a woman that he loved her—so that’s what he did. Flowers were his way of speaking romance and love to me—not so much because I liked them or because the flowers themselves meant anything to him, but because they were what he was supposed to do. Read More →

map_marriage

During my professor days, I would occasionally take a bunch of colored pencils, crayons, markers, and blank paper into the classroom and place them in the center of the room. Read More →

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