June 3, 2017 Office Hour Recording

Sexuality Topics

Full recording of the questions from the June 3 office hours for themes related to the course content of The Art of Desire and Enhancing Sexual Intimacy.

If you want to listen to the June 3 Sexuality Office Hour from start to finish, play the above recording.

For listeners who prefer to browse -- to read the questions and selectively listen to their responses -- the individual questions in the above recording have also been extracted into separate segments below for easier browsing.

Note that there is no question in the above full recording that is not also found below, and vice versa. They are recordings of the same office hour.

Question #1

I'm currently taking your Enhancing Sexual Intimacy course.  There are many things that you mention in this course that I am relating to.  One issue that I have is in regards to kissing my spouse most of the time leads to sexual intercourse.  I am the lower desired person in the relationship and when I engage in kissing my spouse it quickly gets taken and enhanced to the point of intercourse.  Many times I only want to kiss or snuggle but once kissing is engaged I feel like I have no way of stopping the progression without hurting his feelings. In the past I have stood up for myself and told him I didn't want to have intercourse at that time and he got very upset and said "you just can't say no to me because it is too crushing"

It has come to a point that I avoid meaningful kisses or any situation that a meaningful kiss might occur. I do feel bad about this because I love my spouse and enjoy kissing him but it's not worth risking having to have intercourse. He feels hurt and rejected because I back away from him, so whenever he does get a chance to "kiss me" he takes it all the way.

Question #2

I have heard you say several times that great sex is about connection and meanings.  Can you help me understand how connection and meanings interact with biology?  In our case, what we call "great sex" is most often achieved when my body is leading up to ovulation. I get a huge boost in my sex drive for about 10 days leading up to ovulation, then my sex drive falls dramatically and it happens instantly like flipping a switch.  While we thoroughly enjoy those 10 days every month, we both hate that our sexual relationship feels so dependent on that cycle.  I'm 39.  What's going to happen to our relationship when that cycle is no longer functioning?  my husband gets very frustrated because his sex drive is active all the time.  It's hard for him to understand why mine fluctuates so dramatically. He has often said that he wishes he had a "switch" too. 

What can we do to create a sexual relationship that feels great for both of us all the time and is independent of my biology?  Is that even possible?  I have a sense that your going to say yes and I really want to understand that better.  Right now it feels like it's not possible.   It feels like I'm never going to be able to respond to my husband the way that I want to without my biology backing me up.  I am trying to say yes to sex more often even when I'm not feeling it in my body but it does feel like I'm just showing up for his benefit and that's a hard situation for both of us.

Question #3

I am ... the lower-desire partner.  ... once I got married I very much enjoyed sex, ... and from the very beginning felt that our love making was a spiritual and much needed aspect of our marriage.  We have now been married 17 years and many issues have come to the surface and over the past 6 years I have found myself very much struggling with our sex life.

I found out early in our marriage that my husband had been exposed to pornography....  Over time, my husband would want to explore and do new things in bed that I was not comfortable with, some didn’t bother me a lot and some very much bothered me.  This started to put a strain on our love life and I found myself getting anxious about his requests – one because I wasn’t comfortable with them, two because it made me anxious that he had received these ideas from porn and three because I had done some of the request and while some were good and I ended up being ok with, others felt good but made me feel yucky inside afterwards....

Please help me find a balance between feeling like I am enough, and being there to support and love my husband.

Question #4

I'm trying to understand what your professional views are on the use of pornography, individually or within marriage, and how that reconciles with church and psychology (addiction) teachings

Question #5

I want to know what steps I can take to pressure our marriage forward and not controlling my husband in the process.  I took the courage and have had a few conversations with my husband about pornography over the past month after finding out he had seen some explicit videos on Netflix when gone [for an extended period].....

I asked myself the questions you address in the sexuality course and I did have a part to play in where we stand in our relationship sexually.  I had a more asexual stance (having the mindset that sex is bad, still giving, but with low exposure) especially because my desire went down after children came. My husband goes over the top to help accommodate my needs (costly accommodation) and I use covert costly accommodation.  I will go to accommodate and try to be needed, especially intimately.  I guess I thought if I gave to him enough he wouldn't be tempted by pornography. 

With the stresses of military life, my one down position and having him regulate my sense of self I can only see how the eroticism was taken outside the marriage.

So where do I jump off from this point?  I realize I need to self regulate more, but do I just let those things go realizing I can't control the things he chooses to see when gone [for work] and/or alone?  Do I just work on those things I mentioned about myself and look for when there is integrity in our relationship and seeing when he is trustworthy?


Question #6 

Any suggestions to keep desire after finding out your husband has had a pornography addiction? He just told me 2 months ago. We love each other and I know in the end it will make us stronger (even though I'd much rather come closer through a different issue)....but sometimes I get turned off very fast when I think of what he's seen. I think time will help with the sting of pain and anger...I need him as a friend more than ever because of my pain- Which in fact has increased my desire (I think I've found the desire I've needed all these years to make orgasm happen, which hasn't fully happened ever...only close feelings of it when we were dating and making out- I fantasize this a lot!!). He's told me he's had images of what he's seen go through his head to help turn him on when we make love...how sad. I don't want him to fantasize at all!! But I understand what you mean when you've said his sexuality isn't all for me, it's for himself too...

Question #7

While listening to the April recordings a comment you made sparked interest in me to know more of your thoughts. It was the question about disturbing fantasies/ eroticism.You were explaining ( at least I think you were) that somewhere between ages 4-7 the framework for some strange fantacies/ erotisism can be set up. You mentioned a male client having a desire to wear nylons, lingerie/silk. I wanted to know more about this. My husband is an amazing man, religious and desires to be good. He is in a career that is highly masculine. While working through your courses we were discussing fantasies/erotisism and he talked about his desire to wear thigh highs, silky panties etc.