Every time we write about the challenge of increasing a wife’s low sex drive to meet her husband’s high sex drive, (as we did in “The Libido Fairy“, and “Do I Want the Libido Fairy to Visit?”) we get messages from wives that have the opposite experience. It is true that many wives crave the intimate one flesh connection that comes with a healthy a sex life, and some husbands experience a decrease in their sex drive for a variety of reasons. I addressed seven possible causes of low male sex drive in my post, “Sex, Remove the Roadblocks“. One of the issues that I didn’t address in that post was when a husband decides to take matters into his own hands.
For all the wives reading this that just got a pang of fear, read the other 7 roadblocks first. There are many reasons that men experience a decrease in sex drive. Medical reasons, psychological reasons, as well as relational reasons that can all be legitimate causes of reduced libido in men. This post is more about a false decrease or shall we say a deferred “target” for libido.
I believe that many times what a wife perceives as a decrease in her husband’s sex drive is actually the result of her husband turning to masturbation instead.
Masturbation. The word that causes grown men to cringe and starts a thousand theological debates in every church in the world. I know that many of you will disagree with my view, but here it is anyway. The Bible does not strictly forbid the act of masturbation, but it does give a very specific warning about lust. (Matthew 5:28). In my experience it is a near impossibility for a man to masturbate without falling into lust. I challenge, that the visual brain that God gave us and how it is wired directly with our sexual desire does not allow us to masturbate without mental visualisations for someone, unless that person is your wife it is lust. Therefore, I do not believe that it is appropriate for a man to take matters into his own hands, by himself and hidden from his wife.
It is worth stating that Paul Byerly wrote a very thought provoking article on how to incorporate masturbation into marriage in times of separation, or illness. Masturbation in Marriage, contains an interesting set of principles that should be considered by anyone who desires to continue the practice in their marriage.
Why does this happen? Why does a husband decide to take matters into his own hand rather then turning to his wife? Here are four possible answers to that complex question.
Call it habit or addiction there are some men who simply can not stop. They have been masturbating since puberty and even when they try, they are unable to stop. Often the use of pornography accompanies this habitual masturbation and only adds to the shame and guilt that the men caught in this addiction are experiencing. They know it is sinful and even hurting the marriage but they are caught behind the shame unable to admit they need help.
Many men think they would like to have sex daily, but their current intimate time with their wife might be only once a week or less. Rather then dealing with the desire differences and the one flesh opportunities that this creates, some men decide to be content with less frequent intercourse by “relieving the pressure” in between. This seems to work fine till their wife desires intimacy that has already been relieved earlier.
Men are notoriously poor at expressing sexual desire. We tend to either go for locker room methods, or the direct approach. If your come on method is, either pinching your wife’s breast or asking “do you want sex tonight?” then your method needs improvement. Unfortunately, instead of working on communication some guys give up all together. They stop asking and simply turn to masturbation till their wife decides it is time for sex. This quiet desire sends all the wrong messages, that many wives see as a decrease in sex drive.
Some guys have become so used to hearing the answer, no, that they have stopped asking all together. This rejection or threat of rejection has led them to feel that they need to take care of their own desires. Similar to the reason above, the wife may experience this change as her husband lacking desire.
What’s Wrong with That?
With the exception of reason #1 many of the guys reading this might be saying, “ya, so what?”. The problem is this when a husband turns to masturbation he is turning away from his wife. He is giving up on what should be excellent sexual intimacy, and often giving in to thoughts of lust.
Communication and lots of it is the key If you are masturbating in your marriage your wife needs to know about it. Don’t use it as a threat but, she needs to know you are struggling with masturbation and desiring more intimate time with her Tell her that would would like her help with this difficult issue.
For some of you with the habit, or addiction you might find you need additional help or tools to break free. I recommend checking out Freedom Begins Here for some great information.
How about you?
Leave a comment and let us know:
- If you masturbate
- Why or why not.
- And if your wife knows about your practice.