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Understanding Your Husband’s Sexual Needs

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Time and culture have changed the venues of expression, yet the power of a man's sex drive has remained a constant force of both intimacy and destruction.
Author Robert Byrne once quipped, “Anyone who believes that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach flunked geography.” This humorous statement hits home with what any adult with a brain knows: Sex is very, very important to men. Research consistently shows that between 80 and 90 percent of men view sex as the most important aspect of their marriage. When asked what one thing they would like to change in their marriages, they wish that their wives would be more interested in sex and more willing to initiate physical intimacy.Patrick Morley, Understanding Your Man in the Mirror (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2001), 137. Marriage experts Gary and Barbara Rosberg surveyed men about their sexual needs. The vast majority of men indicated that mutual pleasure and female initiation of sex were among their primary sexual needs.Gary Rosberg and Barbara Rosberg, with Ginger Kolbaba, The 5 Sex Needs of Men and Women (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House, 2006), 81. No doubt, our sexually explicit culture plays into the prominence of sex on a man’s mind. He can’t open the newspaper, turn on the television, surf the Net, or walk into a mall without being reminded of sexual desire. Yet long before the Internet or bikinis were invented, sexuality was an extremely powerful force in men’s lives. History teaches us as much. David and Bathsheba. Samson and Delilah. Reuben and Bilhah. Scripture is filled with references to and examples of men falling into sexual temptation. Archaeological discoveries reveal that civilizations thousands of years ago had houses of prostitution. Solomon’s warnings in Proverbs and the exaltations in Song of Songs written 3,000 years ago are completely relevant today. Time and culture have changed the venues of expression, yet the power of a man’s sex drive has remained a constant force of both intimacy and destruction. Before we go too much further, let me acknowledge that you may be married to a man who falls into the 10 to 20 percent of men for whom sex isn’t all-consuming. Although sex may not be as dominant a factor in your husband’s life, it doesn’t discount the fact that it’s important. In fact, many men who avoid or minimize the impact of sex in their lives do so because of past painful experiences or because of the fear of future failure. Regardless of how often your husband thinks or talks about sex, make no mistake, it is a vital aspect of who he is as a man.


Visit Juli Slattery’s website Authentic Intimacy to learn more about God’s design for sexuality.

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