After a long day of taking care of three little boys, cooking, cleaning, and juggling work responsibilities, it was my time to rest. I ignored the subtle flirtations of my husband, Mike, hoping he would get the hint that I was not in the mood. I had reached the finish line.
As we were getting ready for bed, I changed into my PJs and he caught a glimpse of flesh. He looked at me amorously as if the act of changing my clothes was an invitation. I faced a fork in the road: Would I "do my wifely duty," or tell Mike what I was really thinking? I responded with a compromise: "We can do it as long as I don't have to be awake."
If this only happened once in a blue moon, our marriage could weather the storm. However, scenes like this were regular occurrences during our busy years of babies and toddlers. I began to dread sex. Although I loved my husband, I resented that he wanted my body and was encroaching on my rare moments of free time. I remembered hearing that sex was supposed to be a gift from God to a married couple. Frankly, I wanted a gift receipt so I could exchange it for something more useful.
Many young moms can relate to this scenario, as the number one barrier to sexual enjoyment for women is a lack of time and energy. Men often don't understand the mammoth endeavor it can be to switch from mommy mode to lover— who has time for sex when a screaming child is in the next room and dirty dishes are piled in the sink?1