I did not relish the possibility that I was the only Christian woman who had a stronger sex drive than my husband, but for the first decade of our marriage, that’s exactly how I felt. When I shared my dilemma with close friends, I typically got blank stares. One friend facetiously asked, “You mean you actually like sex?” Indeed, I do.
Our culture complicates and contributes to this predicament by idolizing sex and trying to convince men that they won’t make it through the week unless they are sexually active. According to my husband, “As an American male, if you aren’t thinking about, talking about, or having sex on a daily basis, it’s easy to get the message that there’s something wrong with you.” (My husband is not the only man who refuses this worldly mindset, but he does seem to be in the minority.) Sadly, this skewed message often infiltrates the church.
As Christian women, what we most often hear from the pulpit or at conferences is essentially, “Women, we all understand that you aren’t as interested in sex as your husband, but try to be a good wife and give him what he wants.” This perspective does not resonate with my experience and feels both reductionist and demeaning. I would often come away from these events thinking, If God made me a sexual being, why am I getting the message that there’s something wrong with me if I enjoy sex?
A Shameful Secret
The reality that I am interested in sex more frequently than my husband has caused some tension in our 23-year marriage. Though we do a fair amount of public speaking on taboo subjects, this one has not gotten much air time because, to be completely honest, we have both felt some degree of shame.1